Once upon a time in a small rural high school in a red state, I was a closeted kid who fell in love with my straight best friend. I never acted on it or said anything but it was my very first crush/lust/love. Thankfully high school isn't permanent. I graduated, moved away for school, and work and life did "get better." I came out to wonderfully supportive family and friends, found love, got married, and built a life far far away from that little town in a red state. But keep in touch with those friends, including straight guy who from all appearances has a built a wonderful life of his own with a wife and kids.

Fast forward to earlier this year. I was back in red state for the funeral of a mutual friend and saw many of those friends including the straight guy, and it was a bittersweet but powerful and supportive reunion. Over the weeks that followed we pledged to keep much better in touch. And connected via social media... and during an online chat... the straight guy and I were remembering our mutual friend... and started talking about regrets we had. He said that his greatest regret in life was never telling me that he knew I was in love with him, and never acting on that knowledge. That over the years he has wished he could have shown me how much he loved me as well and his feelings for me were emotional, and very physical. "I don't know if I am bi," he wrote, "but I know I have always wanted you. If you regret never sharing that part of you with me and want to change that I am very willing."

I am supposed to fly back to red state next month for a family event. He has said he will be in a hotel nearby and hopes I will join him.

To say this is a mind fuck would be an epic understatement. My problem is this whole thing has stirred up a lot of emotion. I don't know if I could handle sex with this guy. The fact that he is married is a factor but not the main one, as odd as that may sound. To answer your next question—yes, I have shared all this with my own husband. He finds my discomfort hysterical and thinks I should fly back and shag him senseless and get it out of both of our systems.

For me, it's the issue of having the very first sexual and emotional fantasy I ever had offered to me on a plate, decades later. It took me a long time to get over him, accepting what could "never happen." Now I find myself questioning every "bro-ment" we had back then and wondering... was I totally clueless? I also seriously doubt that "going there" would get anything out of my system. Quite the opposite, in fact.

Am I still attracted to him? God, yes. But I know this would be a disaster. I also wonder if this is just him having a mid life crisis. How do I say no in a way that shows him that his honesty with me now is a wonderful gift, but this is more complicated for me than I think he realizes. I want to move past this, but not damage our friendship or my own marriage.


Bro Is 4 Manly Encounter

I'm firmly in the go-shag-your-straight-crush camp, BI4ME, along with your husband and the straight guy who'd like you to shag him.

This whole/hole situation is a common gay male fantasy—finally getting with the guy you had a crush on in high school is a thought many gay guys have entertained at 2 am, their gay husbands gay snoring beside them, a go-to masturbatory sleep aid. So, yeah. Your predicament is something lots of gay guys have gotten off contemplating, BI4ME, but never rarely does a gay guy actually get to do his long-ago, still-straight-identified crush. Even rarer: having your first unrequited love handed to you on a Holiday Inn Express mattress like this. And on the rare occasions when this kind of an offer does comes in, BI4ME, the rest of a gay guy's universe usually doesn't conspire to allow him to go for it. But in your case, BI4ME, the husband is on board! Your first love is on board! And who knows? Maybe his wife is on board! (We can hope!)

To recap: a straight guy you've wanted to fuck your entire life is into the idea of fucking you, your husband is into the idea of you fucking the guy you've always wanted to fuck, and you're into the idea too... but you're not going to fuck this guy. For reasons. Reasons you don't articulate. Just some vague sense that things could go terribly, terribly wrong (the same could be said for most sexual encounters) and/or the entirely legitimate fear—unarticulated, but easily inferred—that fucking this guy could awaken a sleeping monster that winds up stomping your serene and settled life to smithereens, like some sort of bi-curious Godzilla laying waste to your peaceful gay Tokyo.

My hunch is you're not going leave your husband and move back to this town and this dude is not going to leave his wife and start a new life with you. That won't happen even if the fucking is really, really good.

But if you can't do it, BI4ME, don't do it. I keep tossing the word "fuck" around, as if this is just about sex, when it's clearly not—not for you. It's not the idea of sex with this guy that's making you hesitate, but how you used to feel about this guy and the many, many years it took to get over him. You don't want to wind up back in that place. That's perfectly understandable. All you gotta do now, BI4ME, is tell your first love how you feel: "Look, I'm so touched and so tempted. But I'm married now, as are you, and while I'd love blow you, I don't want to blow up my life or yours. Let's be friends—friends who can now be honest with each other about our feelings. And I honestly feel that this would be a mistake. So let's hang out when I'm home—but not alone, and not in your hotel room."

If hearing that damages your renewed friendship, BI4ME, that friendship wasn't long for this world anyway.

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