DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: Do you think it's too late to be gay? I'm in my 60s. I've brought up a family, and my wife died just last year. All my life I suppressed homosexual fantasies, and she never knew. I have this best friend who's gay. Last night we went out for way too many drinks and he asked me if I ever thought about myself being "other than completely hetero." I hesitated a long time, while he looked me in the eye, and then I looked away and lied like a coward. He went home immediately. I think now, after three days, I know the answer I should have given. But, my whole family would be upset if I took a gay man as my partner. This friend and I have always had a deep connection and I felt an attraction around him always. There is love and respect on both sides. Should I call? -- At the Crossroads, Winnipeg
Dear Crossroads: Do what you feel in your heart you should do! You're old enough to have whatever private life you want, with no need for approval from anyone. You can be secret, or you can be out. Plus, your wife has died and can't be hurt by this now, and your kids are all grown up. You can be all that you are, which may be a bisexual male exploring the other end of his sexual continuum. It's up to all of us to be who we are and drink deeply of this life. Got questions? You might want to talk to somebody at Rainbow Resource Centre who understands. Call their anonymous gay/lesbian info line weekday evenings after 7:30 p.m. (284-5208) or visit www.rainbowresourcecentre.org.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I have a feeling I'm being cheated on, right this second. My boyfriend is "working" late again, and is not responding to my texts. He's done this to me before. When I was pregnant he had an "emotional affair." I had the baby, we broke up, and he was with the other woman until he ended up in the hospital, sick from drinking. I looked after him and we got back. Things are now sliding downward. I found blond hairs in his wallet, a business card of some lady (I saw her at a trade show in a booth next to his, and her feelings were obvious.) A month before that I saw conspicuous scratch marks on his back. All the signs are there, but I have no hard proof. I love/hate this person, and I don't want my son growing up in this atmosphere. I want to leave but I can't muster the guts to go. -- Osborne Village Idiot
Dear O.V. Idiot: Why are you clinging to the dream of baby, you and the white picket fence with a husband and father who's an alcoholic and a cheater! You're not the love of his life, and you see through him. Unfortunately, you're still acting like a substitute mother when he drinks himself into the hospital. It's time to let yourself stand on your own two feet as an independent mom with a child who needs "raisin' up right." Children copy behaviour instead of listening to hypocritical lectures. Be a role model for that child now! Once you get rid of the drinker/cheater, and step up your game, a better guy will step up to match you -- not before.