Lesbianing with AE: You’re Getting Married, But You Have a Wandering Eye

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Dear Lindsey,

I’ve been with my partner for the past 6 years. Things are wonderful – she is the love of my life and we are planning to get married next year. This is a big deal for me as I never thought I would get married, because I’ve never felt like I’ve found “the one.” She is amazing, totally loving and supportive, incredibly sexy, wicked smart – the whole package. So what’s the catch? Now that she and I are talking about marriage, I’ve found I have a wandering eye. Three months ago, she was the only person I could see. Now that we’re discussing whether we will have a religious ceremony or if we will elope somewhere crazy like Bermuda, I’m noticing all the sexy baristas and androgynous queer girls that are popping up everywhere like spring flowers. I’m freaked out, and I can’t tell the one person I tell everything to. The harder I try not to notice sexy queers everywhere, the more my head is turning in the street.

-Torn

 

Hey Torn,

You’re having a reaction to getting engaged.

It’s a major status change.

Everything is different, overnight. And nothing is different, because you’re the same person and your boo is the same person, except now you have to call one another fiancĂ©es and talk about things you may or may not care about but are suddenly expected to have an opinion on.

Some people think engagement is soooo fun, but it can also be a ton of stress and that stress can manifest in weird ways, one of those being creeping doubts about whether you’re ready to settle down. And the bridal industry doesn’t like to talk about this, which just makes brides-to-be beat themselves up for any less-than-blissful feelings.

Some people think engagement is soooo fun, but it can also be a ton of stress and that stress can manifest in weird ways, one of those being creeping doubts about whether you’re ready to settle down. And the bridal industry doesn’t like to talk about this, which just makes brides-to-be beat themselves up for any less-than-blissful feelings.

This sort of thing is REALLY common after people get engaged. Parts of you that aren’t ready to get married are flailing about and trying to get your attention in all kinds of ways.

If you have any trauma — whether it’s around marriage as an institution, your gender identity, the dread of settling down forever, or parental expectations that chafe you — it’s going to come out as you plan the wedding. Really, anything. Say ambivalence toward femme fashion or worry your new status will cause a rift between you and your friends who are all unattached.

While right now that’s in you noticing that hotties that have been around the whole time anyway, it could mean you’re sniping about what color invites to get three months from now. So think about other ways you or your boo might have changed from the normal loving people you were to crazed wedding planning zombies.

Rom coms want you to believe your sudden attraction to all kind of ladies means that you’re not ready to settle down with your boo because, oh I dunno, you just had a meet-cute with the barista who gave you a latte with a heart on it.

Remind yourself it’s totally common to be attracted to others not just when you’re engaged but for the rest of your life. You can enjoy looking at these women without beating yourself up, but if you find yourself thinking about acting on any of these crushes, talk to your partner. There’s no rush to set a date if you’re not ready yet. You can have a long engagement and work through these feelings.

Rom coms want you to believe your sudden attraction to all kind of ladies means that you’re not ready to settle down with your boo because, oh I dunno, you just had a meet-cute with the barista who gave you a latte with a heart on it. Remind yourself it’s totally common to be attracted to others not just when you’re engaged but for the rest of your life.

And remember, you get to decide what marriage looks like TO YOU, and you could decide now or five years from now to have an open marriage. Or move to New Zealand. You aren’t cementing your current life choices and saying goodbye to change forever. People grow and change in a healthy marriage.

Let your wandering eye guide you to look inward. As you tease the knot, you’ll figure out what’s informing your sudden interest in others. Then you can decide what to do. Good luck!

Do you have a question for Lindsey? She has an answer! Write to our editor: memoree@afterellen.com with “Q for Lindsey” in the subject line.

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