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I Made a Stupid Mistake


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Hi, I'm new to the forum and thought it was in the best interests of my relationship that I post. Thank you to anyone who gives their time to read the following which I'll try to keep short, but will inevitably fail.


I'm in a long-distance gay relationship that is about to become a normal relationship. But things haven't been easy along the way. There have been massive gaps in which I haven't seen my partner and it gets very tough. I've been unemployed for several months now and with my health being quite bad for about a month (I have had a severe case of bronchitis that nearly became pneumonia, and later got the flu) I haven't been able to travel. The Job Centre have denied me any money since mid-January because my condition has made me 'unavailable for work', though I do not qualify for alternate benefits to the usual Jobseeker's Allowance. As some further background I suffer from bipolar disorder, mild anxiety and body dysmorphic disorder as well as an occasional dependence on alcohol when things get a little rough. My partner also suffers from a mild depression. Bet we sound like a right pair! But against all of this, we genuinely do love each other to pieces and have endured a two-year long-distance relationship sustained mainly over the internet until we have had the means to live together. Things are in place to make that happen within the next few weeks provided my health improves and I have something of some money again to get me on my feet and looking for work again.


In the big gaps between our visits it is typical for us to keep up with each other over Facebook and such. It's not the most conventional approach but it works in the mean time. We've had propositions from other people (guys and girls) asking if we'd be interested in going in for a threesome, though we've declined such offers. For whatever reason we get some attention from some friends online, who aren't shy in sharing themselves with us. We're quite used to it and not a while goes by where somebody doesn't send a scandalous photo of themselves to one of us - but we take it in good nature all the same and generally have no problem with it.

But here's the problem. I mentioned that this was a gay relationship that was pending a property move, and that is partly down to the fact I was still closeted to my Mum whom I live with. I came out to her yesterday amid an array of anxieties...she had a lot on her mind and was genuinely disinterested but I could think of far worse responses. I ended up turning to alcohol from the fridge last night. All my financial concerns, health concerns, coming out concerns...it has all just been too much. By coincidence a friend who sends regular pictures to us sent me one last night, and here's the stupid mistake - I sent one back. It wasn't too revealing and I don't know what possessed me to do it - I don't believe the alcohol alone would bring me to do this. There was nothing more to the conversation with this other person. I decided to tell my partner this morning and though he said he could deal with it, he clearly wasn't very comfortable or happy and ended our conversation. I'm going there later to speak in person, but I have no idea what to say to him without upsetting him more.


I think this thread is more a way to get it off my chest a bit. Why I add guilt to all my other problems I have absolutely no idea. I love him to pieces, unquestionably. I don't want a silly little photo that meant nothing to me to come between us. What would people advise is a good way to approach this in terms of a conversation, aside from a sincere apology? I know we have a lot of problems stacked up without me adding more to them, I just don't know what possessed me to be such an idiot.


Once again, thanks for any input...it is greatly appreciated.

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We can all do pretty silly things when we're highly strung or in particularly stressful situation, you're not alone in that! On the other hand, I'm not sure sending this photo is as big a deal as it seems. How would you feel if your boyfriend sent a photo of himself to someone else? But it went no further? There's a fine line between innocuous flirting, intention to cheat and cheating. It sounds to me like you weren't even really flirting but were just reacting without thinking.


You have both been through a lot in the past two years – long distance relationships are incredibly difficult especially if one or other of you suffers health problems too. The fact that you're still together and planning on moving in together says a lot. I'm sure neither of you want a photograph to come between you.


You've been honest with your boyfriend and giving a sincere apology and there's little else you can do. Do you think coming out to your mum could've been the cause of sending the photograph? In the sense that you've finally admitted who you are to her and there must be a sense of freedom with that, so a part of you responded to that freedom by embracing it? I don't know, I'm just thinking out loud.


Anyway, sometimes what helps when approaching conversations like this with our partners is simply to print out what you've posted above and let him read it. Tell him you're sorry, you feel guilty, you love him and you want to be with him, that you've no idea what prompted you to send that photograph and it meant absolutely nothing. If he's the great guy you make him out to be, he'll understand.


Take care and good luck!

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