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I need guidance before I destroy the best thing that has ever happened to me....


jesteruk

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I need urgent help. I feel I'm on the verge of losing the best thing to ever happen to me and I need to find a way out before I wreck it all.

 

I'll start from the beginning so it all makes sense.

 

Back in 2005, I started dating a girl. It was my first proper relationship, and it prospered and by 2009, we got married. Unfortunately she wasn't the girl I thought she was and had an affair with her boss and cheated on me for over a year and a half before I found out. In that time, she played the part of the relationship not working and manage to get a divorce out of me in 2011 before I found out the truth. She lied to all my family and kept a secret life from me for this time and even when we last spoke years back, she still tried to put the blame on me and make me feel that I was the one at fault. I was devastated and it took years before I started feeling normal again.

 

To get over the trauma, I moved away to another country and start again with a good job. I dated a few girls but never found anyone I truly wanted to be with until August last year.

 

I met my girlfriend on an online dating site. She's beautiful, funny, got a gorgeous smile, beautiful eyes and is just utterly gorgeous to me. We started dating and things flourished and by November, I had moved out of my home and went to live with her. She is the only other girl I can truly say I've fallen in love with and the only one I've literally told everything to. Not even my ex-wife knew as much as her. Tomorrow will be a whole six months together and it should be wonderful....but there is a problem.

 

Prior to me, my girlfriend dated a guy (who she also met online). They dated (discreetly and unofficially to the world), for about 2 years. She tried to make it work with him but he refused to commit and eventually they just ended up being "friends with benefits". He was into very extreme forms of sex including electrocution, torture, chastity play and latex and she enjoyed playing the part with him. Even though they were not dating, he would occasionally come over for some "playtime".

 

So, after meeting me she told him there would no longer be any more sex. (There was a two week gap between the last time she was with him and me.)

 

She was very open about all this and in all fairness, I had seen somebody just a month previously and had broken up with her so I didn't see it any different other than the sex involved.

 

So time went on. I noticed she would text him and asked her to not do this in front of me as I felt uncomfortable. She agreed to do this and not meet up with him. This went on for a couple of months but I could see the tension building after I moved in with her. Just before Christmas, we had our first bad argument over the topic. I found out she had given him a lift home from work without telling me. I was furious with her for doing it behind my back. She even confessed to logging into his Facebook and adding me to his blocked contacts so I couldn't see him any longer through my Facebook profile. She said she did it to remove him from my sight and just missed her friend but I told her he wasn't a friend. He was just using her for sex. Ultimately the argument ended up with me agreeing that she could see him from time to time but she had to be open and honest about it. Tell me in advance and just be conscious of it all.

 

This seemed to resolve things for some time but after Christmas I noticed she was messaging him more and more. She had bought an iPhone and he had one too so they had the power of iMessage now. I began to feel uncomfortable over it all and one morning before I went to work, I decided to take a look at her messages on her iPad. I knew I shouldn't have done it but I wanted to know what they were talking about. In fairness, it was all small-talk and nothing to worry about but she came downstairs as I was on the iPad and caught me red-handed snooping her messages.

 

We had a huge fall out over it and I apologised profusely for invading her privacy but told her of my thoughts and discomfort of it all. She told me I had to stop feeling so jealous over it all and that she loved me and not him. They were just friends and she wanted to keep things that way.

 

Again time went on, but this time things felt a little tense to begin with. We then went away on vacation for a bit and life seemed to return to normal and I felt like our relationship was back on track again. I was happy.

 

Then over the past couple of weeks, I noticed her messaging her ex again. More and more. He had begun dating and she wanted to know all the details and he was filling her in. I tried to get involved in the conversion to try and get myself part of things and also know what he was up to. I won't lie about that. The gist of it all was he was gagging for sex and desperate to find anyone to sleep with and my girlfriend found it all amusing through their conversations.

 

Then a week ago or so, she was using my car and said she would be giving him a lift home from work again. I said fine but stupidly and asked her not to make it a habit. We would swap cars as her mileage to work was much lower than mine and we would swap to keep the miles off my car and she would let me use hers to compensate. Short of the long was I told her not to make it a habit as it would add miles to my car and defeated the point of me using hers. In reality, I didn't really want her ex in my car.

 

Again. Argument and we resolved things by me apologising for my comments and her telling me I shouldn't be so jealous.

 

Cue this week. Again, I'm noticing her messaging this guy in the evening while we're on the couch, but this time she's angling the phone away from me so I can't see. I ask her if she's messaging her ex and she says no, but I know she is so the paranoia in my head is building.

 

I then worked from home yesterday. I won't go into details for this particular part but I decided to use the loo and picked up her iPad by the side of her bed to read. When I switched it on, I saw a message on the lock screen from her ex saying he could meet today. I didn't mean to open the message but when I unlocked the ipad it went directly to iMessage and opened the conversation and I read the first page. She was planning on meeting him through a conversation on Wednesday on her Friday off work.

 

When my girlfriend got home, I asked what her plans were for Friday. She said she would be going shopping in by herself. I asked if she would be going with her mother but she said no. Alone, as she preferred shopping alone.

 

I knew of course she was lying.

 

That night she went to the cinema with her friend and she left her ipad downstairs. Again I picked it up to browse online but noticed she had disabled iMessage on it. Needless to say the paranoia was on a high and I was livid she had lied to me.

 

When she got home I confronted her about it. She seemed pretty calm about it all and said if she had told me, I would have got worked up and acted weird about it. Perhaps that's true but that's for me to deal with. I told her I didn't like her lying about it and her response was her ex was "flaky" and she didn't want to tell me as he would probably not meet anyway. I told her that was not the point and she shouldn't plan things like that behind my back and worse still, lie to me!

 

I also told her she was actively hiding things from me and if she wanted my paranoia to go away, it would have to stop and I would like to meet this ex in person.

 

She said no as "he wasn't ready for that".

 

Needless to say, I don't know what to do. Just accept she has this friend? Do I put my foot down? Do I break up over this?

 

I genuinely love my girlfriend and we've even spoken of marriage and kids but I'm really struggling inside with exactly because I love her.

 

What do I do? Am I simply being ridiculous and have I through my actions caused her to go behind my back?!

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I think you've been brainwashed into thinking that you are entirely in the wrong. Let me first and foremost tell you that you are not. You are not happy with something that is affecting the relationship, and she is also not happy with the solution. You simply have different boundaries that aren't matching up and therefore one person is going to get hurt in order to make the other happy - that person in this case is you. If she had given this guy up then she would be the person who is unhappy. Do you see what I'm getting at?

The point is, as much as you love your girlfriend she is not willing or happy to cut out an ex from her life. The wrong-doing here is the lying, so that she can have the best of both worlds in her life without being concerned that it is hurting you. She has taken the "what he doesn't know won't hurt him" and has decided that she will pick and choose what you know and what you don't know.

If I were you, I would leave. She values this friendship more than your feelings and it isn't fair to you. You want someone who will respect your boundaries, not lie to you.

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That "friend" of hers is clearly giving her something shes not getting from you, you need to identify what that is and fulfill her need for it.

 

You mentioned that you snooped around her messages to her ex quite a few times and was caught red handed on one occasion, why is your gf so ignorant of that fact? Wouldn't she be smarter with hiding her messages next time so that you can't snoop? If I wanted to hide something from my gf and I even caught her snooping around on my phone then next time I will use my phone as a decoy (with normal messages I'd let her read) while maintaining communications with my ex via another device...

 

But ultimately your dilemma is a very simple one, just ask yourself this...

 

"Do I want to live without her?"

 

If the answer is yes then leave her, if the answer is no then w/e she does, you've got no leverage since you don't want to live without her...

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Thank you all for the replies up to now. I did think about moving out for a while and seeing how things went. Basically putting some distance between us but I think our relationship is too far down the line for this and I genuinely want it to work.

 

I know I have insecurity issues with my ex. She feels this is a huge issue. Just the other day I made an outburst comment on a facebook comment from a friend of mine who posted a video of a tale of a girl that was almost identical to my ex. I felt a lot of anger watching it and made some rash comments without much thought to who might see them. Unfortunately she did, as did all my facebook contacts...

 

The comments are now removed but the words stuck in my girlfriends mind. Clearly I have baggage to deal with and I've taken steps today to arrange to see a counsellor. I need to get this out of my system regardless.

 

But today messaging her from work she says how she is considering our relationship and if I'm ready for any of this. I know I am and I know I love my girlfriend whole-heartedly and the thought of losing her is quite simply gut-wrenching. I felt physically sick as she wrote this stuff to me. I tried to call her to talk about it but she hung up on me twice and she then messaged to say she didn't want to talk.

 

I'm not perfect, but this lie has made me seriously question everything with her. I do love her so I will continue trying.

 

I'll also go to my counselling and see how that helps and I will try in every single possible way to make our relationship work. Including not being so uptight about her meeting up with her ex. I just want her to be more open and transparent with me.

 

Ultimately, I'm stuck at work. Feeling helpless and I have no concentration to get any work done.

 

If I'm honest, I just want to go home, get a quick hug from her and ride my bike....

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You cannot hope for someone to be in love and committed to you. At only six months in she is.regularly lying and you regularly invade her privacy. That means the basic foundation for a relationship. ... respect and trust ... is not there.

 

You may not want to.end it but it needs to end. She is not over him and something is missing with you that he gives.

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You cannot hope for someone to be in love and committed to you. At only six months in she is.regularly lying and you regularly invade her privacy. That means the basic foundation for a relationship. ... respect and trust ... is not there.

 

You may not want to.end it but it needs to end. She is not over him and something is missing with you that he gives.

 

Firstly, thank you for your replies. While I've had some good advice, I've also had some bad advice too, but I feel it's right to provide an update.

 

My girlfriend and I had a long chat this weekend. It's clear we love each other immensely but she see's things in a different way to me. She's never been cheated upon and she's never cheated on somebody, whereas I've have. My last marriage ended due to my wife having an affair so life has had a different effect on me.

 

Her reasoning for keeping her ex and I apart was down to trying to protect us both. She tells me she no longer loves him and hasn't done so for over a year and she loves me, yet she cares for him. Hard to stomach for somebody like myself but understandable to a degree. But we both agreed this "protection" was unnecessary and as adults we should both be able to decide ourselves how to deal with each other and she has accepted that we will both meet during one of our evening poker nights with the lads. Who knows?! Maybe I'll even end up liking this guy???

 

Funnily enough, she spoke to him about all my jealously and he even sided with me and said he'd be paranoid too so I think she's seen sense. She's also agreed not to hide things from me and be more open and honest. In fairness, only time will tell if this is true but I genuinely believe she will keep to this.

 

My girlfriend also has many family issues to deal with. I understand those so unfortunately, this all came about during a bad period with her parents so the added stress pushed her away from me as I protested. I'm not saying the guilt is on me, but the timing of all this was pretty poor.

 

The short of the long however is we have discussed at length our problems. We love each other very much and we want this to work so we are trying hard to do so by being more transparent.

 

Which leads me back to some of the comments made. Whilst I appreciate they were all made with very good intentions, most were given in a suggestive form, but others were more forward with suggestions that I should end it. No suggestion of counselling? talking? Anything constructive?

 

Whilst my relationship is not perfect it is one I wish to keep and with any relationship, things can go wrong very quickly and therefore require time and effort to make them work well. There are days when things will be wonderful and days when things are bad. Dating a person is a time to learn them as a person and different people have different quirks and ways of dealing with things. Nobody is universal.

 

Again, while I appreciate some of the comments made, I can't but feel some people are too quick to judge and suggest breaking up as an easy option and I suggest those who have said this, perhaps refrain from jumping on that bandwagon so quickly!

 

If I wanted to break up, I could work this out myself. I did think about it, but like I said. That's the easy option. Here's a nice quote:

 

"You don't develop courage by being happy in your relationships everyday. You develop it by surviving difficult times and challenging adversity." - Epicurus

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Surviving difficult times is different to forcing yourself to be comfortable with a boundary being crossed.

Now that she has promised to tell you the truth, are you willing to stop looking through her private messages?

 

Seeing as I only looked once back in the middle of January and I've never done so since, yes.

 

The subsequent message was seen by accident so not much I can do about that unfortunately.

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Which leads me back to some of the comments made. Whilst I appreciate they were all made with very good intentions, most were given in a suggestive form, but others were more forward with suggestions that I should end it. No suggestion of counselling? talking? Anything constructive?

 

Whilst my relationship is not perfect it is one I wish to keep and with any relationship, things can go wrong very quickly and therefore require time and effort to make them work well. There are days when things will be wonderful and days when things are bad. Dating a person is a time to learn them as a person and different people have different quirks and ways of dealing with things. Nobody is universal.

 

It sounds like you aren't really able to handle advice unless it fits into your agenda - which is to stay together. Fortunately, we are not sychophants, rushing to minimize the situation so that you can keep your relationship.

 

You want to stay together, then stay together. You have already suggested the advice you wanted to hear anyway. From an outsider's perspective, both of you are violating major boundaries and only six months into a relationship you are making seem like is a six-year relationship.

 

You are of course welcome to do what you want. At the same time, you have to accept that sometimes people are not going to tell you what you want to hear all of the time.

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It sounds as though you're minimising her inappropriate behaviour because your feelings for her are too strong to be able to cope with a split. I doubt that meeting this guy will put paid to your 'paranoia' - which, by the way, isn't paranoia because it's founded in reality. You are looking for advice on how to feel happier in a situation which even the other guy wouldn't feel happy with!

 

She's not over him, clearly. She had some kind of connection with him which is still being maintained on some level, while you are being kept on as a nice, stable guy who won't flake on her.

 

I get that you're still infatuated with her - it's only been six months after all - and it may take a lot more of this sort of behaviour from her before it finally kills off your feelings. If you seek out counselling, it should be to find out why your self-esteem is low enough to accept this situation and label it "love", rather than deny your (perfectly well-founded) fears and find a way to continue in a situation which a healthy person would deem unacceptable.

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