Lesbian relationship and sex expert Dr. Glenda Corwin answers our questions!
Dear Dr. Glenda,
My partner has been spending a lot of time with a recent female acquaintance who shares common career and social interests. They meet at least weekly for lunch or coffee, and often talk on the phone or text. I’ve never had a reason not to trust my partner, but I feel uneasy about this friendship. Am I overreacting?
You’re not overreacting. Most of us would feel uneasy in this situation. You need to talk about it, and it may be hard because this is such a sensitive topic. You both need to simply listen to each other so you can understand what’s happening emotionally. Is your partner indulging a flirtation, filling an emotional void, or actually just hanging out with a friend? Once you have more information, you’ll know what will help you feel more at ease.
Remember that it matters–a lot–what the “other woman” thinks and feels. Is she clear about boundaries and fidelity or she under the impression that you’re oblivious or indifferent? What does your partner think this woman thinks? Conflicting agendas are problematic, so clarity really helps.
Your worries make sense. It may be hard to express them, but believe me, avoidance is worse! And authentic communication may help you and your partner love and respect each other even more. That would be a great outcome.
Glenda Corwin, Ph.D is a clinical psychologist who specializes in lesbian sexual issues. She is the author of Sexual Intimacy for Women: A Guide for Same Sex Couples (Seal Press, 2010). Dr. Corwin writes for the Huffington Post: Gay Voices, Epochalips.com, as well as her own blog on www.DrGlendaCorwin.com. She presents frequently at professional conferences, and is a regular guest on Barb Elgin’s LesbianLoveTalk radio program.