Husband-hunting at the gym

Posted on 12 Jan 2006 at 5:26pm
By Candy Marcum

Got the hots for married muscle? Can you say, “‘needless drama workout’?



Dear Candy,

So I’m on the treadmill at the gym when I notice in the mirror that a really hot guy keeps checking out my “form.” I have seen him around, but more than once I’ve overheard him talking to others about his wife and kids and other non-gay subjects.

The gym is predominantly straight, but I know a few other ‘mos who workout there, and we all act more like jocks than seemingly effeminate men.

I’ve done nothing to encourage Mr. Married, but must say that I’m entertaining the idea. He may not be consciously aware he’s cruising me, but on some level he’s interested.

I’m thinking about asking him to get a drink after we work out but want to do it in a non-threatening way in case he knee-jerks into denial. Got a better idea for a response that says I’m interested?

Nuts 4 Straight

Dear Nuts,

I have faith in your analysis of the married man at the gym. And kudos for asking him out. The part that puzzles me is your desire to chase a married guy.

With all the gay men in the world who are happy and confident in their sexual orientation, you zone in on a man who presents his sexual orientation in a befuddled manner. What’s that about?

Some people need drama and excitement in order to feel alive. Maybe you’re wired that way.

But find a healthier way to bring oomph into your life.

You risk rejection by the married man. You risk having your character and reputation damaged if the married man complains to the management about your advance (regardless of its benign nature). You may find yourself avoiding the gym a place you value because you’ve made it uncomfortable by asking this man out.

You sound like a smart guy. Use your intelligence to bring meaning into your life that lifts you up not bring you down. Good luck.

Dear Candy,

I’m 40 years old. In the past eight months, I’ve lost my mom to cancer and my dog to old age. I also ended my a loving relationship when it finally became apparent we weren’t compatible enough to continue any longer.

I’m ready to date and I’m open to a new relationship. But I’m scared of making a mistake, and I can’t bear any more heartache right now.

For the next relationship, I feel I need to invest my emotions wisely. How can I achieve a greater chance of success in a relationship from the very beginning?

Beginning Again

Dear Beginning,

You’ve experienced a series of significant losses. Just one of these the loss of a mother, the death of longtime pet and the end of a committed relationship can bring us to our knees. Combining all these losses within one year can only be described as “trauma.”

Trauma presents itself as the emotion of fear. It’s not surprising that you are scared of making a mistake.

It hurts when relationships end whether through death or through choice.

I commend you for wanting to face your fears and enter the dating world again. But be open to dating several people. Introduce your dates to your friends, and listen to your friend’s feedback.

Most importantly, take the time to analyze and understand what went wrong with your last relationship. What lessons were revealed to you and what did you learn from them?

It’s OK to be scared. And it’s OK to reenter the arena of dating as long as you are knowledgeable about life’s lessons. If you do not learn the lessons from your past relationship, you are doomed to repeat the same mistakes.
Good luck.

Candy Marcum is a licensed professional counselor in private practice in Dallas.

E-mail DearCandyLetters@aol.com

This article appeared in the Dallas Voice print edition, October 13, 2006.

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