DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: My husband is involved in a bromance. He loves his new friend like "the brother he never had." They do everything together. Since this guy arrived from out-of-town, my friendly husband has introduced him to every guy he knows and has gotten him hooked up with curling and racquet sports and all the things my guy likes to do. He quotes his dumb jokes endlessly. I don't see any change in our sex lives and don't think my husband is either gay or bi, but he's crazy about his new pal, and all the laughs they have together. I'm not so sure the new pal is straight, although he's certainly a man's-man and not effeminate in any way. I approached my husband and jealously called them "Oprah-and-Gayle." He blew up, telling me I was paranoid. Now what? -- Fifth Wheel, The Burbs.
Dear Fifth: Does this guy have a girlfriend? If so, suggest some double dates with the four of you so you can become friends with her. If there's no girlfriend in sight, subtly invite the new guy to a large enough food party -- like a winter barbecue potluck -- that a few single women friends could subtly be part of the mix. At the same time, consider going head-to-head with this bromance by making your social life a little more formalized with tickets to events on certain dates. If you do everything last minute, this new friend can be a bigger part of your husband's life -- because your guy will say he has nothing to do. You've already overstated your concern in anger and insult. Apologize for calling names, and let him know you're actually hurt and jealous over the amount of time he's giving his new friend. Sometimes you have to swallow your pride and show the feelings underneath.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: OK, I want to ask this guy out for Valentine's. He works on the next floor from me at work and I rarely see him, so it's not too close. I'd like to go out dancing with him that night. I know he loves to dance and he hasn't had a girlfriend since he broke up with his long-term girlfriend two months ago. My friend on his floor keeps me up to date. Do you think he'd say yes to a simple night out on that special night, or is it too loaded with memories? I have a place I could take him to that's fun. People say I'm a lot of fun and I think he's attracted to me, but I'm scared. I work a lot and never meet anybody outside the place -- but HIM I like a lot. What should I do? -- Dying to Ask
Dear Dying: Valentine's Day is loaded for women emotionally, but for men -- not so much. Pretend you don't know what day it is and go for it. Just be sure it wouldn't end up feeling weird if you became a couple at work. Is there really room for both of you in that workplace if there's a relationship and/or a breakup down the road? Some offices are so vast you can totally avoid a certain human being for months at a time. Is that the case with yours? For better or for worse, people who work a lot tend to date people they meet at work, and they don't get fired for it anymore. He may have a policy against it, so don't take it too personally if he says thanks, but it isn't a good idea.
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