March 2, 2014 at 1:04 am #52065
Sorry for the long story but this is how it goes….
I’ve been together with my partner for 1,5 years now but we have known each other a little over 3. We met online, he lives in America and I live in Europe. During the course of last year I decided that I loved him more than enough so I decided to uproot my life here and move to be with him. The date is set to September this year. In the meantime we have seen each other. I went to America and spent time with him and he has been here twice. Since November last year he has been living with me here in Europe as a n opportunity presented itself careerwise for him so he could stay here for a few months.
I had never had any qualms or reservations about him. I trusted him 200% up until a couple of weeks ago when I received a message from a girl he had been seeing in the past who felt the need to warn me for him. She sent me through screen prints of their conversation and he asks her is she is still single. If so could they please speak. He also lied in that conversation to her. We were on a citytrip and he spun her some lies on where he was and what he was up to. In that conversation he also included some photos of himself. She on the other hand cottoned on that he was in a relationship with me due to some photos she found on Facebook of us togethere in a loving embrace and sent them back to him telling him to back off. I remember the day these messages were going backwards and forwards he came up to me and said someone from the past had found him. An ex-girlfirend of his brother and she could see everything on his Facebook. Could I please update his privacy settings? He was in a real huff and puff about it.
In itself nothing was really wrong with what he had asked her. It all seemed very innocent. I did ask him about it when I came home. He was very calm and spun me the most unbelievable lie you could ever imagine. He stated that she had doctored up the whole conversation and that he had never sent those messages to her. That she is a nutcase and that he had never had a relationship with her at all. There was a heated discussion about it but in the end I dropped it as he stuck to his story and wouldn’t hear anything else about it. A few things didn’t add up. The photos she so called took off his Facebook and put in the message could not have been taken off his page as he didn’t post them until 2 days later and the fact that someone would go through such a painstaking job of creating conversations is just hilarious if I wasn’t so hurt. I spoke about these photos again saying it didn’t add up and he got very defensive, threatening to get on a flight and leaving as he wasn’t going to be doubted and questioned.
As you probably can guess by now I dropped it again. That night I couldn’t sleep and got up. I have never snooped before in my life but I took his phone and checked his Facebook. I found a message from a girl he’s been chatting with for a long time. A few weeks ago she sent him nude photos of herself. There was even talk for her to come down around Halloween last year. That was a week after I had spent the time with him in America. From what I can gather they have actually never seen each other in person as one message from him to her said that he’d been trying to get her to come down for the last 4 years. It’s obvious to say this is in the back of my mind constantly.
I haven’t confronted him about this as I feel bad for having snooped. I am very hurt though that he can lie and keep a straight face to me and tells me he loves me and then behind my back chats with another woman/women and clearly these conversations are not innocent.
What do I do? He will get very upset if I tell him I have seen those messages and I did impose on his privacy by snooping however if I was to do anything like that he’d have left by now.
I am trying to understand it from his point of view. Is it normal for men to engage in these conversations so they know they still have it?
For the record I’m an attractive woman, early thirties, I take care of myself and to my knowledge all the needs (physical & emotional) are being met.
I feel lost, anxious, nervous. I walk on eggshells as I don’t know how to approach it and don’t know what the best way forward is. I have never really learned how to communicate properly and it shows through in relationships. I let things slide and bottle stuff up and in the end I can’t bear it anymore and have to get out. I just up and leave and don’t deal with it – I run! I know that and it’s happening again now and I don’t want it to.
So my question is: does anyone have a suggestion how I can broach this subject with him and work through it? Anxiety strangles me at the thought of it but I know moving forward like this is not an option either with me applying the Ostrich politics to the situation and burying my head in the sand.
Thanks in advance for any advice someone is able to give me.March 2, 2014 at 8:24 am #52079MarthaParticipant
Confront if you must. But be aware that he is going to be mad and blame you. And probably leave.
I have been in this situation and I know it’s not a good one. I was married and miles away from home. But I eventually came to my senses and left him.
You need to do the same. This isnt an innocent flirtation. And no. Real men do not do this type of thing.
You don’t need this. Leave him. Get on with YOUR life and leave the wanker.March 2, 2014 at 9:13 am #52081PennyParticipant
You can confront him. Certainly you don’t need to be walking on eggshells. You have nothing to fear so there is no need to feel anxious or nervous. (I don’t suppose he feels anxious or nervous because he’s lied to you!) Be you, be free, discuss what you want to. He may not like what you have to say but that doesn’t mean you’re wrong to say it.
He may be upset that you snooped but then you’re upset he’s lied. Both are valid complaints, neither is ‘good’ and both need working through if you’re going to make it as a couple – and possibly even if you’re going to split up.
You deserve to find a good guy to be with – a friend. And you might like to try out the Freedom Programme – it’s enlightening.
But for now you maybe feel you need to work through some things with this guy. Other people may say ‘why would you beat yourself up like that?’ but if you’re learning things you need to know and are OK with it, it’s not our place to judge what you do.
I wish you well on this part of your journey. Love & light 🙂March 2, 2014 at 9:19 am #52082MattParticipant
I’m sorry for your suffering, dear sister, and can understand how that new information would crash against the plans, investment and feelings you have for him. Sometimes we’re given a glimpse behind the curtain a little early on, and what a blessing, really! What if it was a year from now in America? Consider that you know, you’re seeing, and have adequate proof of his actions. For the record, his actions harm the intimacy in many ways, and its not your issue. Its not “how do I be comfortable with his philandering?” rather “Is there anything that can be done?” With what you’ve presented, short of any miraculous growth spurt on his side, move on. He has lied, threatened you instead of owning up, and, during the honeymoon phase!
I suppose its plausible that he doesn’t have faith in the relationship, perhaps logistics or culture differences or something, but it seems more like thinking with his small head… and that doesn’t go away unless we want it to. Said differently, perhaps its right to pull back, pause on trusting him, and rest in trust with yourself, add it up, make some decisions based on what you see. Not, of course, by what he explains. And what do you want to do? Try to make it work with what you’re seeing? Its between you and your heart, could you trust him enough to open up to him again? Will that nagging be there?
Consider: The picture of him you have in your mind will stop you from opening to him, being comfortable with him, and even if he vows, authentically, to let go of that behavior and commit to you, trust will be a long, slow process in growing. After all, he spins convincing tales, so could spin a convincing vow. But, the heart is strong, and if there is connection between you two, genuine love, then the only chance I see is in strength, wisdom and communication. Said differently, the cat is out of the bag, don’t bother trying to put it back in, suppress, ostrich… no need for all those scratches, all that dread.
Instead, accept that you’ve just hit a deal breaker, and thank god it happened sooner than later. Sure, modern day travel makes a move across the pond less uprooting, but its still is a major change. So, now you have a crossroads that you’ll have to face, and because of his deceptions, you’ll have to take it alone. So, you’ll need light, strength. Consider metta meditation, or other forms of self nurturing. There’s a lot to process, and the buzzy “ohmygodohmygod” flitting around doesn’t help it. So, regroup, hop in a tub, go see some art alone, listen to soft music, or whatever you do to unwind, come into balance, rest and recharge. I like metta, because its simple and radiant, consider “Sharon Salzburg guided metta meditation” on YouTube if interested.
With strength rekindled, mind a little smoother, approach the situation with space and wisdom. There are some urges in him, tendencies, habits or something that brings these actions forward. If he genuinely wants to settle it, he could. But how could you trust that? Is it worth trying, considering other factors? If you want to throw in the towel, that would make sense. Then, shutting him out, no need to explain, send him home, grieve and move on. If you don’t, then you presenting the enigma or “bump” to the intimacy in a heartfelt communication is the only path I can see. If he can see how his actions have stunted the growth between you two, repent and move on, then maybe. More likely, he’ll hide some more in lies… it really depends on whether he’s ready and the love he feels is strong enough to pull him away from his cheating.
To prevent falling into believing his deceptions, or making it about you, consider looking at it with the same laughable spirit. How funny is it to see him cornered, presented with evidence of his crimes… and his response is a little monkey dance, spins some tales for you. Perhaps a marvel, but certainly unconvincing. “Pay no attention to the man behind the curtain.”
Sometimes, dear sister, when we encounter a crossroad like this we can really evolve as an individual or a couple. My teacher said that it isn’t the same hobbies or interests that keep an intimacy growing, rather its coming to a shared view. Are you both seeing the same things? Said differently, if he can see how his actions hurt, has a “doooh” moment, try to heal whatever caused it, and make it up to you… AND you want to try, feel its worth it, feel like trust could be rebuilt… then maybe. Otherwise, its a deal breaker, and he broke it, not you. The snooping perhaps was a little betrayal, but it seems to me more like it was your heart guiding you toward more necessary information: inquisitivness meeting opportunity meeting need. And what you found is important, and changes things.
Namaste, friend, may whatever path you choose bring you joy and contentment.
MattMarch 2, 2014 at 9:44 pm #52133The RuminantParticipant
I would also like to add another point of view: how do you feel about yourself if you don’t confront him? Yes, it won’t be pleasant and he will blame you and be angry and that is never fun to go through. But if you tell yourself that your knowledge and gut feeling aren’t important enough, you’ll damage your ability to trust yourself. Your relationship with yourself is the most important one that lasts your lifetime.
I have been in countless situations where I knew that something was wrong, but I decided to not believe that feeling and allowed my ego and other people to convince me another story. Of course I always ended up getting hurt, but it all took a toll on how I felt about myself. Other people lying wasn’t the biggest betrayal to me, but that I betrayed myself and put myself in harmful situations even though I knew deep down that I should’ve protected myself by seeking healthier people to be with.
You seem like someone who has a healthy self-esteem. Protect that!March 3, 2014 at 2:14 am #52146
Thanks for your insight. It is true how you put it: I am learning and it’s nobody’s place to judge. We have had a talk, fought, lots of angry words, lots of tears from my end, discussion, etc… Although I felt at first as if I couldn’t get a word out and explain how I was feeling and try and talk this through I did the best I could. We are working through things, due to our communication breakdown lots had been lost between us. We have agreed to work on it. It’ll be a slow process but neither of us wants to lose the other one.
So we’ll see: if things are meant to be, they will be. If not then at least both of us know that we didn’t just give up.March 3, 2014 at 2:18 am #52148
Thank you Matt! Your words did bring me some clarity and as I put above I have decided after lots of talk, tears, heated discussions, etc… that it is worth to pick it up and continue. From everything that was said and done yesterday it has made me decide that it is worth trying again. No matter how hard it was and how much I choked on words and emotions yesterday I finally got my word out. I’m not completely there as yet and still more things have to be talked through and actions have to be taken but I feel relieved and on the path of getting better.
I have looked into the meditation you recommended. I have never done anything like it before and I will give it a go starting tonight.
Thank you for your kind advice and wise words.