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Cheryl Lavin: Sometimes, Cupid’s arrow misfires

Here’s how it should work: You and your spouse have a best friend. Let’s call him Austin. You also have a friend we’ll call Summer. You do the inevitable: You set up Austin and Summer.

You and your spouse and Austin and Summer should now spend many happy Saturday nights together, take trips together, watch one another’s kids grow up and eventually grow old together. But it doesn’t always work out that way. Just ask Ashley. . . .

Ashley and Joel have been married for 18 years. Austin has been their best friend since high school. For years, the three of them did everything together. Then, 15 years ago, they introduced Austin to Ashley’s “dear friend,” Summer. But while Summer was a great friend to Ashley, she turned out to be an awful girlfriend — and later, wife — to Austin.

“Summer is a 5-foot-7, 220-pound aggressive woman,” Ashley writes. “She has very low self-esteem. For a while, we weren’t on speaking terms because we had expressed our concern to Austin about how Summer had pushed him into getting married. Eventually, we repaired things and we each became godparents to each other’s children.”

Now we flash-forward to the present. Austin and Summer are absolutely miserable, says Ashley: “Summer is an overbearing and selfish woman whom we’ve tolerated all these years to be able to have Austin and his children in our lives.”

Over the years, Summer has shared a lot with Ashley. She told her she thinks it’s “pathetic” how much Ashley loves Joel and has warned her that she’ll suffocate him. She also confided some of the intimate details of her own marriage, including the fact that Austin no longer makes love to her. So where does she turn? Let’s hear it from Ashley. . . .

“My husband informed me that Summer had been trying desperately to seduce him. They had actually kissed. He blamed it on his having too much to drink. He decided not to tell me at the time because it was just a minor indiscretion and would only cause pain to everyone involved.

“However, Summer continued to pursue him. She told him  she always felt that they belonged together and that I’ve never been good for him.

“When my husband told Summer he was going to come clean with me, she threatened to tell me about some of his past indiscretions, which happened before we were married. However, I already knew about them.

“When he told me what had happened, I felt bad for him. He had been living with these threats for months. I trust my husband implicitly, and I’m confident that there’s no more to the story than what he has told me.

“I wrote Summer letting her know my husband told me everything. I haven’t heard from her since. It’s been six months.”

Ashley and Joel are sick about the whole situation. Joel is upset with Ashley for having confronted Summer without telling him. Ashley thinks she had a right to confront her. Neither of them can imagine what Summer has told Austin about why they’re no longer seeing them. And they’re afraid to ask.

“We don’t want to hurt anybody,” says Ashley. “We don’t feel it’s our place to tell Austin that his wife isn’t in love with him. The bottom line is, my husband and I have both lost the dearest friend we’ve ever had.”


What should Ashley and Joel do? Send your tale, along with your questions, problems and rants to cheryllavinrapp@gmail.com.

And check out my new ebook, “Dear Cheryl: Advice from Tales from the Front.” COPYRIGHT 2014 CREATORS.COM