Can I trust him and myself?

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    Sorry if my english is messed up, this emotional stuff is hard to translate from my native tongue…
    I have been in a relationship for 4,5 years now. He has difficulties communicating and talking about problems, but he shows that he loves me a lot and works hard to keep our relationship alive.
    There has been a trust issue for the first three yeras – I feel rejected very easily because I have been left alone in my childhood a lot, and he needs a lot of freedom and doesn’t like to talk about stuff a lot.
    Last year we had big crisis, where I had the feeling he was not giving me enough, he was not committing enough, and we did not trust or communicate enough. It was really hard, and we moved apart, but he fought for us and said that he wanted to work things out.
    That he stayed even though I was a pain in the ass created so much trust, that the last year was pure bliss and the best year of our relationship ever.
    Then in November he left his FB-messages open and I read them – finding messages to an ex-love (they had never really been together though), whom he had visited very spontaneously in August…(telling me only afterwords about it and saying she was just an old friend) The messages were a lot of normal stuff, a bit of flirting/complimenting, then no contact and then basically saying that he can not have close contact to her because it would mess up his life, because he still felt very drawn to her. He wrote that what he had gotten to know convinced him that he would be “endlessly excited” to get to know the rest as well… but that she was very distanced and this probably made his life easier.

    This has messed up my trust entirely. I would have married him, trusted him. Now – even though nothing happened and he actually decided to be with me (only because she also has a boyfriend and was very distanced?) – I feel betrayed, I am permanently jealous and afraid, whenever he says something that doesnt show 100%, I get angry and anxious and have the urge to quit the relationship because I am so afraid he doesnt like me enough.
    When the messages came up he said that it had nothing to do with us, that he was in love with her when he was a teenager and those intense teenage-feelings had mixed him up, but he wants to be with me.

    The only real relationship he had before me was with a girl who was extremely jealous and who controlled him. So when I get jealous or afraid, he doesnt react with patience, but he starts to draw back, to get angry, to get cold.
    That puts us into a downward spiral. We know about it, and he tries to stay calm and be nice towards me, but our trust is broken. He told me he deletes messages because he is afraid I could get them wrong. We met at a theater group, and right now he doesnt really want me to go there because he is afraid I just go there to see if he talks to other girls. So I don’t go, and let him have his freedom and let him meet with other people.
    But I wake up almost every morning, doubting him and his love and truthfulness, thinking that I should leave him to prevent being hurt. He just doesnt talk a lot. He just expects me to trust him without him saying anything, and gets angry and unnerved easily.

    In my heart I know that if I let go, if I let him be and trust him, that he will stay with me and that we are good together. He wants to move together again, he sometimes talks about marriage and the future, he asks me to go on holidays with him, he says he loves me.
    But I feel really bad about myself. Just a little thing, and I get so nervous that I cant eat, sleep, work properly, until he has given me a ton of recognition. He knows I feel bad sometimes, but I try not to make him responsible or go on his nerves too much, because I know it is really hard for him ( he was always responsible for his depressed mother…). I feel dependant, and I am really afraid that I am driving him away with my constant need to talk things over and putting pressure on him – even if it is not on an extreme level.

    I think my main problem is that I beat myself up half of the day for being such a jealous whussy and that I can’t relax and let things go their way. I try right now to accept these strong feelings, the fear and the anxiousness, but most of the time I just wish I wasnt like this, and I was the cool girl I was when I trusted in his pure love… Im just so afraid to lose him, to lose my job, to go crazy…

    Maggie Black

    How old are each of you?
    For some reason I am hoping maybe it is a maturity thing with him.
    Did you ask him about the FB thing?

    Reading the words he said to her about wanting to know more and endlessly attracted would take me over the edge.
    That is emotional attraction and women do not like their men to feel emotional attraction to other women.

    I feel for you.

    I doubt I could ever feel trust again with him.

    From what you said about his mom, this sounds like a co-dependent relationship and you are the one walking on eggshells trying not to make waves. I did this for 29 years and I can tell you, it “ain’t fun”.

    I would do lots of contemplating (thinking) (meditation) about this. I think you are being hurt too much.

    You mentioned his “pure love” but it isn’t so pure if he is emotionally texting other women.

    You cannot change how you feel and what you want. You will only sacrifice yourself if you try to.

    Try to relax and see this as a relationship that might not be the best for you.

    Pull away and give him this distance he seems to desperately desire. Giving him this “room” to breathe will help him to see you in a different light.

    Allow him to make the moves toward you. Be the feminine creature men adore. Be his Damsel in distress…. if you know what I mean.
    By giving him the space to move toward you, you are taking that part where he feels smothered and says he needs distance away.

    You may not can do this forever but at least this will get the relationship back in your favor and then you can decide from a more objective place.


    Hi Maggie, thanks for reading and answering!

    We are both 29.
    It was actually just that one sentence that pushed me so much over the edge. I asked him what would have happened if she hadnt been reacting so distanced. He said that he would have woken up out of his stupor after 20 minutes thinking “oh no, how can I get rid of her again?” I do believe him, because when we just got together she actually contacted him and he rejected her. Maybe it was that after all this time he felt sure with us and thought he could be friends with her on a normal level.

    I don’t think there is or has been any other woman. He used to have a lot of female friends, but he had a really bad childhood and takes a long time trusting someone, so I’m pretty sure he would not just fling around with anyone. But yes, it is extremely hurtful to know that this emotional texting has been going on, and yes, after this his love does not feel pure anymore. But how would I feel or react if my teenage love would turn up again? Couldn’t it happen to everyone and put them in a spot where they have to decide?

    I have been trying very hard to give him his room, and it works very well, and he moves toward me. However, I felt the last days that I can’t play any more games, and that I want to admit my feelings and not pretend. I still give him room, but I don’t pretend everything is alright, and when I feel really bad, I tell him.

    He tells me not to worry. But even when we talk on the phone at night, and he tells me that he loves me and misses me (and I know its true, he does not say these things whenever), I still wake up, and feel like I cant move, I’m completely numb and cry the whole way to work. Even though I have lots of friends, supportive family and a really good life with lots of hobbies for myself going on!

    I don’t want to decide against him, because I actually believe him, and I think most of it is me feeling insecure.


    I am seeing things from a different perspective. I too, am 29 years old/female. And have been through too much as a teen and early adulthood to try ignoring these messages. I know you trust you lover and believe him. I understand you thinking it is YOU that is having a hard time. May I ask what the circumstances were that led to him to “visit” an old friend? Why were you not invited? Why did you have to find out about it through his fb messages? I am trying to rule out WHY you feel this way possibly justify HIS behavior and YOURS. There are some reason and justification to feel unsettled about this but I just want to know the situation with the other girl.. possibly try to figure out what his INTENT was.
    Please hear me. I have struggled with crippling anxiety for about 8-9 years now. I am GREAT at offering advice and feedback. However, I do not always receive the feedback well. Once I find out the answers to what you wrote… I think I will be able to give you some more feedback. Honestly, I hope its you and your head that is to blame… However, there are reasons for your head to WARN you and keep you ready for pain when needed. We just need to figure out if your brain is giving you false alarms or not. 🙂 Also, maybe you have questions that need to be asked so you can rid yourself of the thoughts once and for all. I am so sorry that you had a tough experience while a child. There is a way out. I PROMISE YOU. You are not alone. You are beautiful. You are perfect. ANd, the really wonderful thing is that you are reaching out for help and advice. That makes YOU quite a few steps closer to a solution than most! Hang in there… Much love.


    Thank you so much for taking the time and for your compassion! I really appreciate it.

    This was how it happened: I was away for the weekend. He is a teacher and was on summer holidays. He just had his first car, and went to visit her. He told me only afterwords because it was spontaneous. I know this also from the messages I read later. My feeling is that he was just bored, and thought it would be nice to catch up.

    They did not have contact for a while. Then they started writing again here and there, normal stuff. Then he did not reply for weeks/months. Then he wrote her that he was sorry he did not write, but that it was very difficult for him to have contact with her and it would make his life too complicated. He wrote that “back then” he wanted to be close to her, and now she is near (geographically), but the circumstances are different.
    Then he had this outburst of emotions saying how exciting it could be, but wrote immediately afterwords, that it was god she was so distanced, because it made his life much easier.

    I told him I read his messages, he said that if there had been anything to tell he would have told me, that it were old teenage-feelings that just excited him in that moment, that it had nothing to do with us, and that he wanted to be with me and would not stay in contact with her…

    Since then our trust has suffered. He is tiptoeing around me, and I am tiptoeing around him. I try to be open with him and talk about stuff, but that is very difficult for him, even though he tries to. But my fear and my bad self esteem are bigger than anything he could say to me, and he feels constantly under pressure…

    I dont want to give up on this relationship, and I know he doesnt want to either.
    But after reading your comments I thought about giving us a break, so that we both can figure out how to build up trust again and I can learn how to be ok with myself and not feel so dependant…


    If neither of you want to give up, keep fighting for each other. You deserve to be happy and fulfilled! However, due to childhood things that happened to you it is harder to mentally and emotionally digest this kind of challenge. But, if you BOTH love one another then you will do whatever it takes to work through this. I learned that I had PTSD quite a long time ago and I began seeing a counselor. I learned so much about myself and about other people. The best things I took from counseling was the confidence I gained through working through EACH and EVERY situation that I could recall that caused me pain, discomfort, and mistrust. These dissections have taken years to think on, work on, analyse, and gain understanding. Your FEAR is normal. But, your response to anything that reminds you in the slightest way of the traumatic incident will trigger you to panic!!! Even if the initial emails you found or however you found out about it was the worst part. Your 1st reaction is PANIC and when you try revisiting the topic it gives you the same panic causing you to lose the REALITY of the situation again. So, then you need reassurance, reminders, comfort, and security about the issue ALL over again. Please know that these feelings you are having ARE normal to a degree. But, more importantly there is a way to get yourself back to “normal” again. It really depends on what you want to do about it. You could talk to a friend who is UNbiased about the situation, you could seek counseling, you could try doing team building things together like hiking, going on a walk in an unfamiliar place and rely on each other just the two of you while on an adventure(one person carries the water the other person carries the food, one person uses a map the other watches for wild animals! You really can work things out, I know it. Get yourselves out of your comfort zones together! Go build on your beautiful life together! If these things are still difficult because he is passed the point of TRYING then I wouldn’t say you need a break but that you should look into working solely on yourself. We are capable of overcoming these obstacles. It could take a few days, months, years.. One thing I KNOW is that YOU ARE WORTH IT. You are worth the time, effort, and love. And, it all begins inside YOU. “There is light at the end of the tunnel”.. even if you cant see it now… AND, “The grass is greener where you water it” <3


    Dear trusttheflow!
    Thank you for your great advice, you are giving me lots of hope and it made some things clearer to me. I am seeing a counselor (only saw her this morning after she was on holidays), and I successfully battled panic attacks in the past.
    This time, although it seems so obvious – I just did not recognise that it is basically the same as a panic attack, just as you said, and that means I know that I will find a way to handle it and I can separate my strong reaction from what is actually going on in our relationship! Your post was an important part for me to recognise this.

    I have already written down all the triggers, all the fears that are related to it, and I am going to dissect and look and accept this shit until it dissolves 🙂
    (Just after doing this I got a message from him, which I felt was lacking emotion, and I was able to write down each and every thought that went through my mind – from shame to anger – and finally understood how I went in to that state of panic! I really hope this is the way out…)

    It should not matter how the relationship itself works out, I need to be able to deal with my fears, otherwise it will happen again in the next relationship…

    Thank you very much again! Especially for the last sentence, it rings so true!


    AGh! You almost made me start crying. But, I DID get chills and goose bumps all over my body from this message! Thank you so much for giving me the opportunity to share my own experiences with you. It makes me feel so good to know that what I have experienced is not just ME on my own. Thank you so much for your responses and feedback to me. 🙂 Now Im getting teary eyed. A good teary eyed though 🙂


    I’m so glad I actually stopped crying!!! :-DDD Just a little good tear from what you wrote!

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