This was sent to Aunt Babz via email...
Dear Aunt Babz,
First I’d just like to start off by saying that I have been in a very good relationship for about 3 ½ years. I just don’t want anyone to misinterpret anything by thinking I am unhappy or really unsure.. Because all I’m really looking for is a little input, blunt, honest input. My boyfriend & I were long distance for most of those 3 years.. However it was a healthy, trustworthy long distance relationship. This past fall he decided he wanted to make things easier and better for us.. He went through a lot of trouble and made the impossible possible to leave his life, family, everything back at home and come move closer to me. He moved here knowing that he wouldn’t be able to see me as much as he expected because we are both attending college full time.. Are still about an hour away and plus things have been hard for me at home. I have the boyfriend that all the friends and family love.. That everyone thinks is so perfect, it is nice however when things are so good to be true.. It causes a little tilt in the relationship to be a nightmare. I’ve learned that by some rocky roads that we have hit. I have never had any trust issues with him, always felt secure and confident about us.. He feels the same. A couple of months ago I started to discover some things.. Long story short-- I learned that he lied about silly things, like going out for lunches or hanging out with a group of people (girls included) He has proven to me that it was all innocent. I am not the jealous, crazy type.. I never thought I had to be. I always trusted him to be around whoever whenever and still respect our relationship & vice versa. What hurts me the most is the dishonesty. I will admit.. I have dealt with the situations in childish ways but I am just not used mess up’s and refuse to get used to things like that. I over analyze a lot.. I have discovered that the Lies were all innocent .. And in most cases weren’t technically lies but still he did make decisions that he wouldn’t like done to him. I am certain that he is sorry.. I am certain and feel reassured that I have nothing to worry about in the “ has he been faithful” category. Like a typical woman=) .. I won’t get into detail about things I have done to hurt him that he has forgiven me for .. But I do admit to that & he has always been very forgiving. But my pride tells me that I don’t need to feel obligated to forgive him & that I should consider it something that jeopardized our relationship and leave him.. Because if he cared he wouldn’t Lie.. Or keep things away from me. I am a type of woman who “won’t stand for nothing” with constructive criticism from my close friends I realize that it would be a mistake to break off such a great relationship for something like this.. They tell me I tend to be very protective of myself and shouldn't let my pride get in my way this time w/ someone like him(they feel this way b/c they know who he is and think I should take into consideration all he‘s done for me and trust they were all honest mistakes, they tell me I need to put my pride down. My gut instinct tells me I’d be silly to leave him.. I am not really even angry at him about the situation anymore, I don’t bring it up. But I do think about it a lot.. And at times I feel that continuing and accepting this will mean I'm “ just another weak woman” for accepting someone into my life who has done this. I’m going to stop right here.. I think I might of made things seem worse then they really are ( I tend to do that) but I just want to make sure I get the most brutal honesty there is out there.
Let me try to elaborate more to familiarize you w/ my relationship & who I am...maybe this seems strange to u that I'm coming to a complete stranger..but i am young & have a strong belief that unbiased opinions could be more reliable than biased..& not sayin that what my family and friends have to say isnt right but from ur feedback u def seem to know what ur talking about..So out of curiousity taking all that i've mentioned into consideration & now after the fact .. What would YOU do with the same scenerio, try to put urself in my shoes for a min..how would u handle the situation ?
.. I don't really know what this says about me(taking-seeking advice from a complete stranger) but hey you seem educated, realistic, sincere & strong-minded. I got that observation just from your comment you left..on my post that I'm somewhat ashamed of. I really think about it now, I don't know why/how I let myself go as far as posting something seeking advice on the web..but I guess it was my childish side looking for more input on something so minor & i'm leaving a lot of things out that I've done or handled things that contribute to the reason I've prob become a mess over this..and leaving out things i've done to him that are prob just eating at me now.. So I just wanted to elaborate a little more hoping you can give me even more advice in return. See all of this happend months ago & obviously my gut instinct told me I should believe.. with the proof an all that he was faithful, that I never doubted. Neither of us have ever been the jealous types, i've never gave him the idea that I had a problem w/ him having female friends. Also another thing.. it seems that a lot of mature adults i went to for advice in healthy relationships don't consider what he's done as "lying" b/c well i guess w/ a little digging i happend to find out what i've never asked or questioned before. However I refuse to take any of that in--because it still wasn't right & he agrees. In your comment you mentioned how I should know WHY he lied. When all this happend.. in short, his explanations were that the females in the group were girls who he knew through his guy friends he made in his dorm. & that he was around the girls when he was invited to lunch or dinner a few times as a group of the new transfer college kids that lived on the same floor or would just run into each other & it would happen at random. I completely understood but i was dissapointed; b/c i told him then what is the reason from keeping that information from me. He said he never thought of it that way, and that he knows thats a mistake, he said that he never really knew who would or wouldn't show up & that it was all a very honest mistake.. that he never realized that maybe it could be wrong,that he never looked at it that way never thought of it in that way.. he was/is sorry. he begged for forgiveness but then told me he understands if i couldn't forgive him for something as little as this b/c he doesn't know how else to explain something that didn't mean anything at all. So basically his reasons why.. were never that he "needed space" or "didn't want to hurt me" or whatever other cliche things ppl lie about even when it is innocent. I realize that I put much more weight on the issue than there really was,do u agree?..after so many interegating conversations i put him through for it--i could tell. Because I realized that I made it more important then it was, made things mean more thn they really did: so i basically trapped him into apologizing and explaining it as if it were the greatest sin he's ever committed. A little about me: I am young, almost 20 yrs old, overprotective of myself, perfectionist, refuse to take in negative feelings, never believed in mistakes, over analyze everything, care too much, hypocritical, & I am recently trying to recover from a minor eating disorder(which seems to be a result of all the above personal issues that i have struggled with before my relationship, w/ or w/o him this has been me.. so as u can see maybe A lot of my personal issues/insecurities add to why I felt such betrayal by such childish things(?) & felt that i was maybe degrading myself if i was forgiving.. But I thank you so much & trust, even as a stranger.. you won't belittle my opening up to you & that you are being honest & I'd really appreciate some more input when you get the chance. Sorry that it might seem a little choppy & Long ---
- please reply to this e-mail. thank you
Well, I'll start at the bottom, of your letter and work my way up. Somehow, I can relate to your letter, completely. Your feelings are real and right. They belong to you and it is what you choose to do with them, that will make the difference.
Your guy told some dumb white lies, that really were inconsequential but lies are lies and we have to wonder what the motive was or is. Maybe he was trying to impress and it backfired on his butt. He feels the sting of that, now, I am quite sure.
I see absolutely nothing wrong with you, as a person, the whole package. I see nothing wrong with your desire for the best. You will be successful in life, by your desires alone. But of course, we are all human and we tend to mess up from time to time. That is why the words forgive and forget were invented. But I feel there is more to this, in your eyes, than a simple premise of forgive and forget. It's the principle of the incidents.
You may never really know exactly why he did and said what he did or implied. That is really not the important thing here. I have the feeling, he may have tried to make you think. What was he trying to make you think about? Was it to appreciate him because he is a desirable guy or that he is living a life, he wishes he could? I think it is running at the mouth syndrome. Many men are infected with the false bravo bug. But there is a cure for that.
My gut instincts tell me that, you will not settle for any bullshit relationship and that is right. In fact I encourage it. There is no law that says we must marry and be unhappy. But you want it right the first time. Your strict requirements for someone to engage your heart are reasonable but you must remember that men are not mind readers and they often have a need to draw attention to their manlihood. It is an age old practice and he is not any different than any other guy. So, what to do? You must reassure him from time to time. I did not say fluff his ego in a patronizing manner but never take him for granted, even if you are independent enough, that you do not need him. I know this to be true but you can not, turn it on and off when you wish, meaning you have to view a relationship, such as yours, as you let him be the man, you be the woman in the full text of the relationship and you give credit where credit is due. What I mean by that, is that there are always things, we as women need help with. In turn, this world revolves around women and the world would literally stop, if it were not for women. Do you understand what I am saying?
We as women have been put in our place but we need to empower ourselves with the fact that life and population and all things would come to a full stop, if you eradicated women. As well, we must appreciate our men, too. From the little things they do, you know, the unpleasantries in life and so on. I can not put my finger on the complex premise of what I am trying to say here, except to tell you that you do not have to bend or bow, you just have to communicate.
I realize that you do not want to harp on him, about this subject and there's nothing worse than a nag but obviously, this is still a deep cut and I understand why.
It is my suggestion, that you sit your guy down and you say that you do not want to bring up the past, in the context to squeeze out any more apology. You have forgiven him but you have not forgotten. There's a reason, it has scored you. You feel a bit of betrayal, understandably. So, you explain that you feel a bit of betrayal. He will probably look at you like, "What the hell are you talking about?" And he may even say or think, "What the hell is the big deal?" This is where you must explain to him, that you expect the very best from the best.
I'd be willing to bet that you are a gorgeous women and I'd further bet, that one half of you knows it and the other half tells you that you are crazy, for thinking that. One half of you knows that you can get whatever it is you want, whether it be a guy, job, degree, whatever. You have an extremely strong personality and are a go getter. So, I think you know that you could have another guy. But you do not want another guy and except for this, group of incidents, he has proven his loyalty. But you expect the best from the best and will not stand for anything less. You need to tell him this. Then you need to stand firmly on the fact that you will, can and should show him that's what's good for the goose, is always good for the Gander with a capital "G."
You point out to him, that he must always remember this. It is this conversation, which will mold and shape your relationship. Sometimes, a fella just needs his gal to take him by the hand and show him the world. You will and can do this and remind him that behind every good and great man, is a powerful woman, one who realizes and is fine being a woman, loves being in her own skin and has the understanding that your man, is your equal, regardless of physical attributes.
He in turn must also realize this. You are his equal and for whatever reason, that he is attracted to you, it has to be more than your good looks. He knows this and I do think he has a few insecurities. You must assure him that in your eyes, he is "The One" and you do not see anything else. So he needs to stop trying to make you think or appreciate him or playing any other games he might think up. You will not tolerate it because you do not have to. You must say this in an assertive way, matter of fact but in a loving manner.
You must also explain to him that you do not need him but that you want him. You point out, that there is a distinct difference. In order for things to work, in your world, the most important thing, is complete and total honesty. It is only through this, that trust, a variable that is paramount to every healthy relationship, grows and becomes second nature.
You must be able to trust his emotions, as well as handing him your heart. I believe you are a woman, of a higher caliber and will not and refuse to hand the keys to your heart to just anybody. Actually, he does not even realize that he is a lucky guy. There must be something about him that has entertained and played your heart strings all this time. Am I right or what?
No, he's not real good looking, not bad looking either. I think, he is a well rounded package and you want to keep it that way. He needs to appreciate the fact that you are a deep thinker but your love is deeper than most women. When you love, you love with every fiber of your being and you, indeed, are a rare breed. You are for real, you play for keeps and will kick the crap out of anything that stands in your way. You are the kind of woman that wears a Bitch Belt proudly but you simply want things to be right, not partly right but every little bit, every nook and cranny, every niche, polished, proudly.
You tell your guy that you will wipe the slate clean. But you want complete honesty from this moment on. You have chosen him because of his attributes and even the littlest of lies, tarnishes that. More importantly, I do believe, that he does not understand that, you not only love him but you respect him. You hold him in the highest regard and telling the smallest of lies, takes away from that. It's that damn simple, that's it and that's all. Now, you lean over and kiss him and whisper in his ear;