BTL COVID-19 Resource Guide

As the world continues to learn more about coronavirus and its spread, it's vital to stay up-to-date on the latest developments. However, it's also important to make sure that the information being distributed is from credible sources. To that end, Between The Lines has compiled, [...]

Dear Jody: Unexpected birthday gift basket deserved thank you note

By | 2018-01-16T06:32:11-05:00 February 1st, 2007|Opinions|

Q: I live with a group of women, all lesbians. When we first moved in together, about six months ago, it seemed like a great idea. There are five of us and we all got along and really enjoyed each other’s company. We did lots of things together, and they were really my main support system. Well, what happened to ruin all this is that “Mary” and “Jenny” paired up and started being a couple, and then about two weeks later, “Sarah” and “Karen” started “dating.” (If you call sleeping together, “dating.”) Now I feel like the fifth wheel. You know how new couples are, just focused on each other. That’s the way it is around here. Every time I look around they are kissing and hugging or whispering in each other’s ear. Plus both couples are going out together, you know “double dating.” They always ask me if I want to go with them, but that is really no fun for me. To me that just feels really lonely. It makes me feel like I am a big loser or something.
I would have never moved in with them if I had known what was going to happen. I think they should have told me ahead of time that they were interested in each other – before we all moved in together. I want to move out, but they say they can’t afford the rent if I don’t live there, and I haven’t been able to find anyone to take my place. We still have seven months left on our lease so we can’t just move out.
How do I handle living here the next six months and not get angry and ruin my relationship with them?
A: I can understand how this has made your living arrangement uncomfortable. You said you think that they should have told you before you all moved in together, but did they know they were attracted to each other and were planning to get together? My guess is that this was not something planned.
Have you tried talking with your friends about how there coupleness makes you feel? I certainly wouldn’t expect them to not be couples, but are there ways they could behave that would make you less uncomfortable? Tell them what you are feeling and ask them to help you feel a part of the group. Also I would start calling on other friends – or making other friends – that you don’t live with and invite them to do things with you. You may want to ask them to go with you when you go out with the couples so you don’t feel like a fifth wheel.

Q: Last week was my birthday. A bunch of us got together and went out to celebrate at a local gay bar. All of the guys were my friends except one guy who was a friend of a friend. His name is “Gerald.” He didn’t really flirt with me that night. I wasn’t interested in him, just having a good time with my friends. He asked me to dance several times and I did, but I also danced with my friends and other people at the bar. What I’m trying to say is that nothing happened between Gerald and me. The next day, Gerald sent me a gift basket. To say the least, I was very surprised. I didn’t expect a present from him. I don’t want to start exchanging birthday presents with Gerald but now I feel obligated to find out when his birthday is and get him something when the time comes.
How do I let him know I don’t want to exchange presents with him without being rude?
A: I would suspect that he wants to be more than just an acquaintance with you. If this is not something you are interested in, I would send him a thank you note and let it go at that. You are not obliged to get him a present.

About the Author:

BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.