Originally Posted by bookbug
I think there is work to be done in coming to terms with the idea that people are not interchangeable.
Very worth noting, thank you. And I've been thinking these past days that if I were "merely" struggling with the change or potential loss of a close friendship that did not involve the sexual aspect, I'd expect--and would have--her 100% support and empathy without feeling guilty about asking for it. At our age, in our mid-40s, close friends have come and gone, of course...so it's something we've both gone through, and she in particular, as perhaps many women do, has had some pretty intense "friend crushes" that I know she's mourned the loss/alteration of, and I've helped her through those at the times they occurred.
So it might be useful for me to frame some of our conversations a bit more that way for her, while recognizing of course that apples are not oranges, and that The Boy has been more than "just" a non-sexual friend. We're still relatively new to this, after all, and I think, as she said to me last night, "The first time we hit everyone of these new bumps is going to be the hardest, but we'll keep going."