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Dear Christine, Interconnected in Ypsilanti

  • Posted on October 1, 2017 at 12:47 pm

Dear Christine, My husband and I work together, live together, share most of the same friends and enjoy many of the same activities. We’ve been together for 9 years this September. I recently decided to join an LGBT bowling league. My husband feels hurt but I feel it’s time we don’t do every single thing together. My feelings for him are as strong as ever. Am I being selfish for wanting us to finally have a thing or two that we can do on our own? Signed, Interconnected in Ypsilanti Dear Interconnected, Every relationship is unique and complicated. What first attracts us can later on drive us apart. In a marriage, each of you has individual needs and wants as well as the couple together having needs. Making sure you have time to be together, sharing love, lives, cooking and cleaning, friends and emotions are necessary. Sometimes couples grow distant because of being apart too much, due to work, parenting or separate interests. If that’s the case, planning time to be together is crucial. People grow and change in their emotional and social needs, but they don’t always grow the same direction at the same time. As needs and wants…

Dear Christine, Comfortable in Chelsea

  • Posted on May 1, 2017 at 9:08 am

Dear Christine,

I’ve had a secret that I’ve kept for more than 20 years and for the past 10 years I’ve been leading a bit of a double life. 20 years ago I started a physical relationship with a married woman I met through work. I fell hard. We both did. She refused to come out or to leave her husband. She also had 2 children and parents who were very catholic who she didn’t want to disappoint.

We have kept up the affair but in the meantime I met and made a commitment to the woman I’ve been living with for 10 years.

Here’s the dilemma I’m now faced with.   I love them both but my true heart lies with my first love. Her husband has left her, her parents are dead and her children are grown and married.  She has decided finally that she can and wants to be with me and now I’m the one putting on the brakes. I don’t want to hurt anyone and I’ve gotten used to the way life has been.  I just don’t know what to do. Is there any advice you can offer?

Signed, Comfortable in Chelsea

Dear Comfortable,

Oh, dear! You put yourself in a real bind here, and I don’t see a way out that doesn’t have you hurt as a component.  There’s consequences to every choice, and sometimes we don’t have to live with those consequences until much later.  You chose to have an physical affair with married woman.  It might have been enough for you for the first 10 years, but then you met someone who was available.  So you made your life with her.  And kept the affair on the side.  I’m assuming that your partner doesn’t know about the 20 year affair. I’m not sure you’d be comfortable with how things have been for these past 10 years if she knew.

You have new choices to make. Your true love of 20 years is now available and willing.  What do you do?  How do you make this choice?  How do you tell each of them (does the affair know about your 10 year partner?) about the other?  You many not want to hurt anyone, but keeping secrets hurt when the truth comes out.  Delaying it doesn’t make it less painful.

You have to decide who you are at your core and then make choices based on who you are. Are you a truthful, honest person or do you hold back some details.  If you tell your 10 year partner that you want to leave, she’s going to want to know why.  What do you say?  How much do you say?  If you don’t give her an answer that has a lot of truth at the core, she’s going to feel that you are hiding something.  And she will hurt, that you are hiding something, that you won’t be honest.  And she may start digging to find out what the truth is, and discovering the truth from someone other than you is really going to hurt.  If you haven’t told your 20 year love that you are in a committed relationship, she also needs to know that, too.

It’s very hard to have an intimate relationship with someone when you aren’t being honest with each other. Being honest often hurts.  But seeking truth in intimacy builds trust, allowing vulnerability and closeness to mend the hurts.  Decide who you are.  Then decide who you want to be with.  Then tell both of them your decision.  They are both adults and they will let you know their decision about their continued relationship or friendship with you, once they know your truth.  Good luck.

Christine Cantrell, PhD

Psychologist

Christine C. Cantrell, PhD
1026 W. 11 Mile Rd,
Suite C
Royal Oak, MI 48067
248-591-2888

Click here to email Christine.

Dear Christine, Romantically Confused in Romeo

  • Posted on February 6, 2017 at 9:40 am

Dear Christine, I am 25 year old female I’ve just lately like a couple months ago realized I’m bisexual even though I have gotten with a women way before then and enjoyed it. I have always found women attractive and when I got older I became very attracted to women sexually. For a while now I’ve been interested in women romantically. I have a wonderful bf but some thing is missing I don’t even like the ideal of sex with guys as much as I use to. I mostly think about is women’s body’s that seems to be what I really like. Also I like the ideal of dating a women . I wanna kiss and cuddle and more with a girl I have imaged my self dating a girl and hanging out the weird thing is though lately with in a week or bit more i had 3 dreams of dating women the last one had very strong like I wanted to be with her long time. Why am I having those kind of dreams? Is bisexual the right label for me? Cause I like guys and straight sex but the desire to date and have sex with them has…

Dear Christine, Wreck in Warren

  • Posted on January 23, 2017 at 10:25 am

Dear Christine, came out late, bad 5 yr relationship and now in a very good one. Prob is she is still very connected with her ex. They text/talk every day, a lot. The ex will come and spend a weekend. She is very needy and always has drama in her life. She is not out to friends/family or coworkers. I am not handling this very well. My new lady is a rescuer. She likes being needed. I do not need rescuing or saving. I feel like I am being displaced by her. hate this. A wreck in Warren Dear Wreck, At first glance I thought I read that you are in a bad relationship, but I see the “bad one” was 5 years prior to the good one you are in now. I guess I wonder how good this current relationship is. How did you end up with a partner who is needy and loves to rescue and save others? What brings you together? What keeps you together? First of all, you can’t change someone else’s nature, priorities or personality. The most prominent thing you have revealed about your current partner is that she is “needy and always has drama…