‘I was deeply in love with my non-lesbian best friend for years’

Dear Trish: How do I know I’ll love my new girlfriend as much as I loved that friend?

‘When we are in a committed relationship we get into the thick of things with our partners and we take risks that may not happen in friendships.’ Photograph: iStock

‘When we are in a committed relationship we get into the thick of things with our partners and we take risks that may not happen in friendships.’ Photograph: iStock

Question: I am a lesbian in my early 30s. I came out relatively late and have been extremely lucky to receive nothing but support and love from my friends and family. Recently, I met an incredible woman who (I believe) loves me and sees her long-term future being with me. I can also see a long-term future with her.

My problem is that I was deeply in love with my (heterosexual) best friend for many years. My best friend and I have never discussed my feelings, but I would not be surprised if she suspected them. Although I have made peace with the fact that my love for her can never be reciprocated in the way I might wish, to my own frustration I cannot stop myself comparing the love I felt for my best friend with the love I feel for my girlfriend. The love I felt for my best friend is so much more intense. Knowing myself how deeply I am capable of loving someone, do I end my relationship and hope that I meet someone else who I’ll love as deeply as my best friend, or do I continue in this relationship and hope that in time I will love my girlfriend as much as I loved my best friend?

The Irish Times
Please subscribe or sign in to continue reading.
The Irish Times

How can I keep reading?

You’ve reached an article that is only available to Irish Times subscribers.

Subscribe today and get the full picture for just €1 for the first month.

Subscribe No obligation, cancel any time.