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Am I right to be worried about our relationship?


Squidgirl
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Things haven't been going great with me and my boyfriend lately. We have been together for 3 years and I have never been this worried about our relationship. I accidentally caught him a few months ago chatting with random people on the internet when I used his pc. He was there, and immediately deleted everything and admitted later there were flirty texts among them. He is very insecure and said that is why he enjoyed those conversations for validation and that he never had long talks or a connection with these people. I felt heartbroken when I found out but didn't want to throw away our relationship so I eventually forgave him. I have my insecurities too so since that moment I have been doubting him. Lately I felt something was off so when I had a chance, I looked through his texts. That was wrong of me and I admit that, a relationship should be based on trust after all. I found messages to his friend about this girl he knows and he said to him that he was hoping they would have s3x (in less nice wording), but it didn't happen but that it's ok because he has 'low standards' so maybe with someone else in the future. Ok... so obviously I got very upset and confronted him. He then got mad that I looked through his things to find something to get upset about. He said its just guy talk and it has no meaning - it's just how they usually talk with eachother. He did say that what he said was wrong. I'm not in a great place right now and I know I carry bagage with extreme anxiety and with that also comes jealousy. I don't know if I can handle losing him right now and somewhere I still believe him. 

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1 hour ago, Squidgirl said:

. I'm not in a great place right now and I know I carry bagage with extreme anxiety 

Sorry this is happening. Do you live together? How old is he?

Do you have trusted friends and family to help? What do you mean by "baggage"?

Hopefully you are seeing a physician about the anxiety and going to a qualified therapist for ongoing support.

Much of your anxiety is due to his lies and gaslighting. Meaning making himself the victim. It's complete bull that "he needs validation" and "it's just guy talk". Worse is turning it around on you that you're in the wrong for rightfully confronting his crap .

He's acting sleazy and you know it. Trust your instincts. He's not committed to you. You need to end it. He's willing to make you feel awful so he can get his hahas from slimy behaviors.

 

Edited by Wiseman2
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@Wiseman2 Thank you for replying. I haven't told anyone because I know they would tell me the same as you did - to end things with him and it would ruin his relationship with my family. Unfortunately I'm not seeing a therapist even though I probably should. I am kind of lost right now, not doing well with my studies and relocated recently so I don't know anyone here. We do live together, and I know it's not what I should be thinking about but breaking up would also lead to a mess regarding looking for a new place (super difficult right now) and income. He is in his mid-twenties.

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Ah, classic "Why did you look through my texts that prove I am the cheater/intend to cheat, that completely ruins our trust" line. Like his intend to cheat totally doesnt do the same thing.

Its unclear if he does it because he is just a cheater in general or because he is maybe inexperienced so wants to try more. What is not unclear is that you should get away from there. Breach of trust or not, his intentions to cheat are quite clear. And in situation like that you have nothing to seek there unless you just want to stand by the side while he flirts and hooks up with random girls. And no, he will not clean up his act. All cheaters say that, none of them actually does it. I know its not an easy thing, but break that up before it ruins you even more. It will only get worse in time and it will be more harder to you.

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28 minutes ago, Squidgirl said:

@Wiseman2  not doing well with my studies and relocated recently so I don't know anyone here. We do live together.

Ok. Start looking around for places to live. Check out dorms, student housing and look into house sharing and roommates. Don't stay trapped in this mess.

Talk to trusted adults about your situation. Check campus resources for counseling. You should be covered by insurance so see a physician and get a referral to a qualified therapist.

Most of all stop playing house with a pig 🐷. Respect yourself.

Get more involved in university life. Join some groups and clubs, volunteer, get a part time job, get involved in sports and fitness, take extra classes, join study groups. Make better use of your time and energy.

Don't waste your time being this creep's maid and easy access to sex. He has zero respect for you.

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Thank you all for your support. I will have a conversation with him and depending on how that goes I will make a decision. I would like to note that he is very insecure and so I can see him talking this way to his friend to act 'tough' and not acting on it. I don't think he ever actually slept with someone else. He is usually a  caring and loving boyfriend so that is what makes it so difficult...  I do agree that I have to think about me first and need to have more respect for myself. I have to focus on my self-development and that way I will probably gain confidence as well.

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57 minutes ago, Squidgirl said:

I would like to note that he is very insecure and so I can see him talking this way to his friend to act 'tough' and not acting on it.

Firstly, you shouldn't be with someone who is this insecure. You should be with a confident man who doesn't need a woman to baby him and make him feel better.

Secondly, I don't believe for a moment that he's not acting on it. His friends obviously value cheating if he brags to them about it. And your boyfriend's boasts mean that he values it as well! What kind of low do you have to be to value cheating?

Why are you with a guy who measures his value by cheating on and disrespecting a woman who is trying to share her life with him?? 

It doesn't matter that he says sweet things to your face. Talk is cheap and easy. A person who betrays you like this, even by making lewd jokes about betraying you to his friends, is not a nice person, period. 

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I find it odd that he explained this away mentioning "guy talk". For this reason alone, I'd think twice about him as an individual. He can't be trusted so why spend your time or your life with him? You will want to date someone who is trustworthy and can make decisions when you're not looking in your best interests for the both of you. This is just ridiculous. The relationship goes nowhere. 

I would not be able to date someone I can't trust. Maybe it's time to be more honest with yourself too.

 

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Him being insecure is HIS issue. Him being a cheater, yup , HIS ISSUE. Don’t make it your issue. 
 

So what he it will ruin his relationship with YOUR family. They are your family, correct. You get their support not him. 
 

Move home and tell your parents what happened and take time to sort yourself out. 

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You agree you deserve better, this isn't good for your mental and emotional health (could be damaging to your physical health- stress, sexually transmitted diseases).

But.....

a break up will bring about

1. the need to move

2. income concerns

3. negative  impacts to your family's relationship with your boyfriend.

These challenges while difficult are:

1. not reasons to stay in an unhealthy relationship 

2. are temporary 

3. can be overcome 

4. once faced will set you up for a better life. 

People will use excuses like I'm insecure, weak, not smart, or other people to manipulate you into doing what is best for them.  And so that they don't have to do any of the work on themselves. 

 

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These are all rationalizations that keeps you from making a difficult but necessary decision.

*He's insecure so he chats up other women and tells his friends he seeking sex with others.  (this alone makes him an unfit partner)

*You have a mysterious character flaw that makes you insecure for some unknown reason.  This drove you to go looking for proof for your insecurities.   And now you beat your self up for invading his privacy.

Anxiety is typically about something you are avoiding and by the looks of it here you are avoiding your screaming intuition that your boyfriend is cheating on you, emotionally or otherwise.  If he hasn't acted on it, he is actively planning it.  You didn't accidently find proof.  Your intuition was right.  He gave you good reason that something was off and you went looking for it.  One act doesn't negate the other.

Don't get hung up on the fact that you went looking and get into a what came first - the chicken or the egg debate.  You checking or his cheating.  These are all symptoms of a larger problem you both need to address head on.

Edited by reinventmyself
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On 10/25/2021 at 6:08 AM, Squidgirl said:

Thank you all for your support. I will have a conversation with him and depending on how that goes I will make a decision. I would like to note that he is very insecure and so I can see him talking this way to his friend to act 'tough' and not acting on it. I don't think he ever actually slept with someone else. He is usually a  caring and loving boyfriend so that is what makes it so difficult...  I do agree that I have to think about me first and need to have more respect for myself. I have to focus on my self-development and that way I will probably gain confidence as well.

So then are you ok with him excusing other inappropriate behavior with "I was just talking tough I didn't mean it" - you don't have to think of yourself first or focus on self-development.  You can think of yourself first when the situation calls for it -like putting on your oxygen mask first before helping others on a plane.  It's really more simple than that.  You simply have to use common sense and ask yourself if it's ok with you deep down, that he behave inappropriately because he's "insecure" so it's excusable - I mean of course someone who is insecure would choose to behave this way, right? (sarcastic -of course not). 

Are you worth a type of treatment where you're not tempted to invade someone's privacy and snoop around to see who your partner is communicating with? Are you worthy of a relationship where you trust your partner to act consistently with your commitment?  Where a reason for staying is because you didn't win the lottery so it's hard to find a new place to live? None of that requires focusing on self-development or putting yourself first.  It's much much easier and simpler. The reason it feels hard is because the status quo is easier and of course you're still into him and attracted to him.  It's just that he's probably not right for you long term -you can talk to him all night but will you be telling him something he doesn't already know?  I doubt it. 

Here's something he won't know.  "I am uncomfortable being with you because I don't trust you to behave appropriately and to live up to our commitment to each other.  I do have feelings for you and I also don't see us together long term because of your choices and behavior"

Just imagine this scenario:  "honey I'm sorry - I took [child's name] to [your friend's] house for a playdate and she was alone and you know she's divorced- I've been feeling so insecure lately and she asked me to massage her shoulders and told me how handsome I was.  I felt so validated!! I hooked up with her because I jneeded the validation -you know how insecure I am and you know you understood in the past it's just for validation so I figured it wouldn't be that bad.  Oh and don't worry the kids were watching a movie downstairs.  They didn't know"

Edited by Batya33
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You were all right. I was foolish to think it could be okay. I had a conversation with him in which I was extremely vulnerable and of course he told me what I wanted to hear. Not even 24 hours later, I find he is on a dating app asking someone to meet up. I know I was naive. I saw it coming and am still in shock. How can a person be so two-faced? Make you feel admired and loved and at the same time treat you like trash. I packed a bag and left. I'm still so hurt that it causes physical pain but I had to go.

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Sorry to hear this, but glad you are out of this situation. 

17 minutes ago, Squidgirl said:

How can a person be so two-faced? Make you feel admired and loved and at the same time treat you like trash.

I don't know, but these people are out there and they do a very good job pretending to have empathy and compassion. They are very deceptive--and very believable! But there are signs that will tell you that you're dealing with a person like this. You have to watch your own behavior and monitor your own anxiety level. If you find yourself feeling crazy, anxious, and questioning everything, you probably have one in your life. They create chaos wherever they go and sit serenely by while everything falls apart.

Edited by Jibralta
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Your experience is a prime example of why confronting almost never works.

They blame you for snooping, they deflect, they minimize, they justify with nonsensical reasons, they get angry.

Even in the rare instance where they're apologetic and show remorse, and promise to never do it again, that rarely happens. I mean think about it, just because they got caught doesn't mean the underlying motivations and lack of ethics will simply evaporate, and suddenly responsibility and respect for their partner will materialize out of nowhere. 

You've seen his true colors,  you aren't going to fix this by painting over them.

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2 hours ago, gamon said:

just because they got caught doesn't mean the underlying motivations and lack of ethics will simply evaporate, and suddenly responsibility and respect for their partner will materialize out of nowhere.

You've seen his true colors,  you aren't going to fix this by painting over them.

Exactly. This is who he is.

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I'm sorry you got involved with such a horrid guy, OP. 

There are indeed such people out there. That's why it is critical to believe what they show us about them, and not hope that they find a "plausible" enough explanation so they can continue lying and cheating. 

Just see it, read the writing on the wall, and walk away. 

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