Jump to content

Recommended Posts

First of all, to those who remember me, hi all!

 

Now, my boyfriend and I have been together for over four years now. Do I trust him? Yes and no. I trust him not to cheat on me, but I don't define trust as only "not cheating." I also have to trust you to have my best interests in mind, that you care for me and will keep my feelings in mind when making decisions.

 

He recently went to a bachelor party for a CLOSE friend (I stress close for a good reason.) Strip clubs and general debauchery were involved but I didn't argue because I know the groom and his friends and how close they all are. Although I do not feel comfortable with the level of revelry I know (and was told) they partook in, I didn't argue because they have been close friends and still are to this day. I let it slide despite my comfort level, didn't ask questions, didn't bother him.

 

He has another friend who is getting married soon. This friend was his BEST friend in the world when we first met; however soon after we started dating this friend dropped off the face of the planet. This particular friend talked very badly about me out of jealously when we first met, then got very involved with his new girlfriend and dropped off the face of the planet. His girlfriend tried to blame ME for the fact they didn't hangout anymore: We met up in Atlantic City and she accused me of keeping my boyfriend from his friend. I told her and her boyfriend in no uncertain terms that I had absolutely no problem with them hanging out and never did (and meant it) and had no idea where the accusations were coming from. This was three years ago. They still haven't talked since.

 

I am not lying or being in denial when I say I honestly had no problems with this friend or his girlfriend initially. But now I do. It has been over three years and they have not spoken, after supposedly being BEST friends all throughout highschool.I have suffered so much guilt over the accusations that it was somehow my fault that they didn't hangout; I begged my boyfriend to hangout with his friend, told him so many times that if they didn't hangout because of me for some reason (because he didn't like me) to just go out without me, I didn't care.

 

But four years down the line I am done with it. I felt guilty for years, I almost broke up with my boyfriend out of guilt that they weren't friends because he didn't like me. Even recently, I told him how guilty I felt for keeping them apart somehow. I don't know WHY they don't like me; From what I heard, they think I'm promiscuous because four years ago they saw me buying a drink for my bestfriends boyfriend at the time at a bar and assumed I was trying to cheat on my boyfriend instead of believing me that it was my friends boyfriend. I've yet to live that down after four years. I can honestly say it was innocent and I had no attraction to the guy, I was just being friendly.

 

Anyway.... Long long story short. I hate strip clubs. It has nothing to do with trust, it has nothing to do with the strippers (I have a friend who is a stripper, and I know how the profession works from their point of view.) I do not believe my boyfriend will cheat on me, I do not believe a stripper would go out of her way to do something physical with my boyfriend. I just do not like them because I am conservative, I do not feel right having men touch me no matter what the circumstance is, and although I am okay with my boyfriend going to stripclubs for his close friends bachelor parties, I feel that my conservative nature should be respected. To explain this further: I do not feel I have a right to stop him from going when it is a close friend, but I feel like him going constantly for every Tom **** and Harry (he has SO many random friends) is disrespecting my comfort level. I didn't put up a fight for the recent bachelor party and I wouldn't for his close friends or families bachelor parties because even though I am uncomfortable with it, I don't feel it is my right.

 

But this friend irks me. He has put me down, called me promiscuous (putting it gently), made me feel guilty for years for keeping my boyfriend from him when I actually didn't care, used every excuse to put me in a bad light when in reality (ACCORDING to my boyfriend) he ALWAYS disappears when he has a girlfriend and blames it on other people. I at this point literally hate him.

 

SO I tried to talk to my boyfriend tonight. I told him I do not feel comfortable with strip clubs, and although I won't stop him from going for his close friends and family, I would prefer if he took my feelings in account and did not go to this particular friends bachelor party. My reasoning is that this friend hasn't been there throughout our entire relationship, put me down, made me feel awful, and I would appreciate if he could take my feelings into account this one time and skip the stripclub for this friend who I feel like doesn't deserve it over my feelings.

 

My boyfriend REFUSED! He told me that there was no way in hell he would "ditch out" on his "friends" party. I cried with tears over feeling that he was choosing this losers feelings over mine. I made NO issue over the recent bachelor party because it was a friend I've seen week after week over four years and genuinely feel is a good friend; this other guy has NOT been around. I told him how horrible this other guy has made me feel over the years and I just wish he would take my feelings into account in this one circumstance; my boyfriend shot me down and told me there was no way he would skip out because they have been friends for years. I feel horrible. I feel like my feeling don't matter, and honestly I'm feeling like I should break up with my boyfriend if he cares more about this friends feelings than mine. He says it's only because I don't trust him that I care. But it isn't true; He was at the strip club for four hours last weekend and I didn't even ask what happened. It's not about not trusting him in my opinion; it's about me not feeling comfortable with the circumstance and asking him to compromise. He says I'm being unreasonable and I need to just deal with it because he's going no matter what.

 

Thoughts?

Link to post
Share on other sites

The only question that matters is why is this guy still his friend if he calls you "promiscuous" among other things. If that were me, I would tell my friend to shut his ****ing mouth and make a decision if that doesn't work.

 

Regarding strip clubs, the only thing you can control not liking them is that you don't have to enter them yourself. I don't have any sympathy there and I'm not a guy who frequents peeler bars. If he sees this guy as a good friend, he will not skip out on his stag party no.matter.what. The other side of the friend coin from my first comment, is that everyone (men and women) values friends over boyfriends and girlfriends. That should change when there are rings on fingers because until that point, friends and family are the most important people in any person's life. Getting engaged and eventually married makes you family, thus amongst the most important people in each others' lives. I'm not saying you're not important to him and he might even really love you, but if you're just bf/gf and not engaged, that's all you are even after four years.

Link to post
Share on other sites
This isn't really about stripclubs because otherwise you would have objected the first time. This is because you don't like his friend.

Okay, you got me. You're totally right. It may be immature; I don't know. I'm hoping somebody will knock sense into me. The way I feel is this: you know I'm uncomfortable with it, but I won't object when I feel like I don't have a right to. But this friend has been horrible to me, and knowing how I feel about these situations I wish he would take my feelings into account in this circumstance. But he refuses, even though he hasn't talked to this guy in years. Tell me I'm unreasonable, I'd welcome it.

Link to post
Share on other sites
I think this may be the tip of an iceberg.

 

Am I right in recalling that you have posted before that you have an abusive boyfriend?

 

He is abusive (IMO) in the sense that he makes me feel like I don't have a right to my feelings. I try my best to communicate to him using "I feel" and "this makes me think," and even in those circumstances he tells me my feelings are wrong and I'm lying about them. He makes me feel like I don't have a voice, but the sick part is that I can't distinguish what comes from my trust and abandonment issues from my family and what I actually have a right to feel. It's a twisted cycle, where I no longer can figure out what's a normal relationship. It's disgusting... because I can't figure out if he acts like somebody who loves me, or somebody who is warping my image of what is supposed to be a normal relationship, and if I'm just crazy. I'm not going to lie and pretend I don't have trust and abandonment issues (he calls them "daddy issues.") Wow, when I type it out like this I sound like a teenager instead of a 25 year old. Let me go gag...

Link to post
Share on other sites

I see what you're saying, I just can't reconcile it. If somebody is telling you they wan't to be with you and they see themselves being engaged with you soon: so the day before I should be okay with whatever you do, but the next day if you have a ring suddenly you should act differently? THAT is what I don't understand; if you say you have this commitment to somebody, why should the days before the ring be any different than the days after? It's the same feeling.

 

But agree with DN. It's really not about the stripclub. He can go every day for all I care. It's about choosing somebody else's feelings over mine; somebody who hasn't been around for years while we spend every day being best friends and being there for each other. I can't figure out why his feelings should matter more than mine just because this friend happens to be getting married

Link to post
Share on other sites

Obviously it's not a magical sudden change in feeling when you actually pop the question. I know people who got mutually engaged (IE: no actual question, just a mutual decision that it's the next step and they went shopping for rings), I have an aunt and uncle who did the regular engagement and took 15 years to actually get married and there are people (like me) who have no reason to ever actually get married (not religious in any way) and would like to spend life with someone. So you're not wrong, but I can't fully agree if he's saying he sees himself being engaged with you soon. That tells me he's not yet ready for engagement, which he obviously sees as something that makes the relationship something more than it is now.

 

Given what you've said about how he treats you in general, this one party for a d!ckhead friend of his isn't the issue.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Okay. Brutal as it may be, THAT is the advice I am looking for. I classify myself as being particularly introspective, and now it's kind of surprising me that I chose to focus on this one little issue for this post. I tend to feel that the little issues usually extend to a bigger picture; in this case, i feel that it's another example of him proving that he is not as serious about me as he claims. i can't pretend it doesn't kill to rehash and reiterate. i put so much effort into our relationship, to have it unreciprocated is horrible.

Link to post
Share on other sites

There is usually more than one thing that makes a relationship dysfunctional, and usually both parties have baggage they are bringing to it that contributes.

 

BUT. Here are some things you can bank on that broadly apply.

 

Even if you do have abandonment and "daddy issues," he uses that as a whip against you to invalidate you. It's the way he keeps the upper hand. So he is a manipulator. You did not make him a manipulator, and nor did your issues make him a manipulator. He came to this relationship a manipulator and your issues have been convenient for him.

 

Even telling you that you have "daddy issues" is disrespectful. That is a form of mocking. Can you picture a therapist saying to you, "I see. So based on what you've told me, you seem to have 'daddy issues'"? Does that have a respectful vibe to it? If someone is using contemptuous, disrespectful language to you, guess what -- they are disrespecting you. Again -- this is apart from the fact that you do have daddy issues that yes, do exist. You still owe it to yourself to have a partner who is respectful. And in my experience, once someone disrespects you, it's nearly impossible for them to spontaneously reverse course and start respecting you. So this man will never respect you.

 

Being with him longer or getting rings is not going to change this. It's just going to get more and more entrenched. No happily ever after there - - just more of the same, or worse, because more years seem to dig deeper ruts in what's already a rut. Bad relationships are like shoes that sort of hurt in the store, but you want them anyway. Fast forward several hours of walking in them later. What has happened to those sore spots?

 

I have found (and I've dealt a lot with this dynamic) that generally, when you can no longer tell whether "my mind is playing tricks on me, and it's really my problem" or whether your partner is actually being emotionally abusive, they have already entered territory where they are emotionally abusive. Someone who is not, you will actually know is not by the way they treat your concerns. You will not feel confused about whether it's you or them. Yes, believe it or not. But when you get healthier, you will observe that. You're currently not healthy enough to be able to discern that, and unfortunately, you never will get healthy enough with him around, because he perpetuates the cycle. I especially hold this item as being true when you are the type of person who is inclined to blame yourself for everything (and I can tell you are).

 

Which brings me to my next point, and that is: I think it's not healthy that you were feeling so guilty about the lack of contact between your bf and his friend that you almost broke up with him and were begging him to get in touch with this guy. The guy was a jerk to you, and on top of that, it is his business whether he wants to contact his friend and vice versa. They are grown men and can decide the terms of their friendship, but for you to take on the outcome of that or the terms as if it's somehow all revolving around you is a distorted reaction. I don't think if your bf had integrity (and respected you) he would want to be friends unless his buddy took back the insults towards you. But aside from that on your end, it is really not your place to try to dictate the friendship, how often they should be or not be interacting, and how. I can understand why you wouldn't want him to be friends with this guy because the guy was so disrespectful to you, and your bf tolerates that -- but you have been inconsistent with your stance as well. First you were begging your bf to stay in contact and hang out with this jerk, and now that he does want to hang out with him (at strip joints, which you have told him you don't mind), you are telling him it's not okay. I'm not saying you should be okay with the way he's handled this, but you have given some very mixed signals about how you want him to behave with this friend.

 

Last, and this is a tricky one -- when someone tells you over and over again that you have a problem with trust, there is a good chance THEY may actually not be trustworthy. This is not true in every case -- my last ex had HUGE trust issues even though I was a trustworthy person. But in the case of someone who is using your trust issues against you, it's a different matter. Someone who repeatedly tries to make you doubt yourself I see as someone who is using that doubt to throw off suspicion of their own behavior.

 

If he can get you to think the problem is yourself -- you will never guess the problem is him or anything he may be doing.

 

And this is coming from someone who has trusted (and still does) fairly generously, and assumes everyone innocent until proven guilty. Yet I wouldn't trust a man like your bf. His statements are tactics, and tactics are used for one's self-interest. So, anything goes after that.

 

To be honest and blunt, I would not only NOT marry this man, but I would get into therapy if I were you (if you're not already) with the goal of getting the strength to leave this man. And I would not get into another relationship until you have worked through a lot of the issues that right now will make no relationship you have healthy, and attract only unhealthy men to you.

 

Four years is enough. Believe me, when you look back on four years in a relationship that was terminally dysfunctional, you wish you could get those years back. But it'll be worth it if you get out (sooner rather than later) and learn from it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Thank you A MILLION times for putting so much thought into your reply. I'm going to read it over a few times until I give you my full response. You've given me a lot of insight, and a lot to think about. I will reply in a couple days as I think about all of your and all of the other posters responses. But truly, thank you.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey KB,

 

I recall that you've made other threads about this guy in the past, and honestly, I don't think it looks good. It was a year or 2 years ago that you were posting about how he is constantly invalidating your feelings and making you feel like he doesn't care, and at this point, I don't ever see that changing.

 

So think about it this way: This guy is never going to change. Can you live with that for the rest of your life?

Link to post
Share on other sites

This is another thing I've noticed. You tell us here about how bad your boyfriend makes you feel sometimes, and then you go on to say this:

 

 

 

Now here you're downplaying the way you feel. Do you tend to be ashamed about your emotions? It's ok to feel a certain way. You aren't perfect. And you deserve someone who respects how you feel, not someone who will belittle you.

Link to post
Share on other sites

I understand completely how you're feeling. I'll share one of my own personal experiences. I dated a guy for four years, and we were talking about marriage. During the last year of that relationship, he was invited to a wedding by one of his college friends. He had only seen this friend maybe once a year during the three years that I dated him. The bride was a girl that I went to law school with while I dated the guy, and for some reason she didn't like me. I never knew a reason why. When he got the wedding invitation, it didn't list that he could bring a date. So, he asked his friend if he could bring me to it. His friend told him that he could bring a date, but he could not bring me. This hurt my feelings really badly. I didn't know what I had done to make the bride not like me... I had never dated the groom or done anything wrong to her. I debated what to do for a long time. It was a lose-lose situation. If I asked him to not go to the wedding, then I was taking him away from his friends. But if he went to the wedding, I felt like he was letting his friends treat me badly and not standing up for me. We were talking about marriage ourselves, and I didn't want to marry someone who would let people treat me with disrespect. Finally, I just told him how it all made me feel. I didn't tell him what I wanted to do, I just shared my feelings with him and let him decide what to do. He decided to go to the wedding without me. I accepted the decision, and continued with the relationship. We dated for another 6 months after that I think, but it was never the same after that. I felt like I couldn't trust him to stand up for me when his friends disrespected me. And so the relationship ended.

 

I think it's perfectly normal to want your boyfriend to put your feelings first. I don't think that there's a magical moment when you get a ring on your finger that suddenly makes someone start putting your first. I think that it's more gradual, and as a person gets more serious about you, they should gradually start putting you first in their life.

 

It's a really hard situation for him too though. If he skips the party because you don't like it, then his friends are kinda right that you're preventing him from hanging out with him

 

I personally hate bachelor parties. I hate what they symbolize. I think that a person should be excited to get married, and not need one last night of "freedom" to do a bunch of sexual and horrible things before making that commitment to his wife. So, I guess I'm really conservative when it comes to that. Question for you... how will you feel if your boyfriend wants a bachelor party with strippers before getting married to you? That's always been a big issue with me. I am absolutely not okay with it. But I'm still looking for a man who feels the same way.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The problem is that it wasn't his friend disrespecting you but his friend's fiancee who, for whatever reason, didn't want you at her wedding.

 

IMO it is never wise to try and force or manipulate a partner to choose you or a friend when there is no real need. Why would you want to go to a wedding where you aren't wanted and why would you want to essentially stop a partner from attending a friend's wedding because your feelings are hurt?

 

Controlling or manipulative behaviour by making a partner choose sides unnecessarily is never wise and to blame a partner when they won't be manipulated is counter-productive.

Link to post
Share on other sites
The problem is that it wasn't his friend disrespecting you but his friend's fiancee who, for whatever reason, didn't want you at her wedding.

 

IMO it is never wise to try and force or manipulate a partner to choose you or a friend when there is no real need. Why would you want to go to a wedding where you aren't wanted and why would you want to essentially stop a partner from attending a friend's wedding because your feelings are hurt?

 

Controlling or manipulative behaviour by making a partner choose sides unnecessarily is never wise and to blame a partner when they won't be manipulated is counter-productive.

 

I agree, and I didn't force him to choose. I told him to do whatever he wanted to do, and I tried to accept his decision. Ultimately, I decided it wasn't the type of relationship I wanted to be in. There were lots of other issues too with the relationship, and that wasn't the only cause of the breakup.

 

You can't force a partner to do what you want them to do. But you can control whether you stay with the person or not. If he's not making you happy, leave the relationship. It doesn't matter if other people think you're in the right or in the wrong.... all that matters is what you think and whether you're happy.

Link to post
Share on other sites

People often disguise 'feelings' as 'opinions.' True feelings (jealousy, anger, happyness) can't be wrong and are not subjective. He has no right to tell you that you're not angry, for example. However OPINIONS or assertions with no proof absolutely CAN be demonstrably wrong.

 

Are you saying stuff like "I feel sad", or saying stuff like "I feel like ". Two different things. I mean, you are certainly entitled to your opinions of course, but he's entitled to disagree with them.

 

It would be better to say, for example. "It makes me unhappy that you are going to a bachelor party with your friend". He might be able to give you reassurances, but he certainly can't refute that you are unhappy about it.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

×
×
  • Create New...