My friend of ten years is rarely single for more than a week between relationships.
Each boyfriend’s always the love of her life and she claims she’s the happiest she’s ever been.
However, within a month of dating them, she begins to cheat. But she doesn't believe she’s “cheating.”
She says she’s just getting it out of her system. Or, that a friendly hangout escalated so quickly that she couldn't help but give in.
It bothers me when she does this.
I like her as a friend; she’s never done anything wrong to me.
But when she tells me about the other guys, I feel angry that she’d do that to a “boyfriend.”
(They’re always unaware of her behaviour because she thinks it'll cause drama for them to know).
Recently, she’s gotten engaged to the last couple of guys, and asked me to be maid of honour each time.
I’m starting to feel like an accomplice.
She promises that once she’s actually married, she’ll be faithful, but I’m unsure I can believe her.
Should I continue accepting what she does? Do I tell these guys of her unfaithfulness?
Or, do I cut ties with her because I feel so hurt to know that she can do this?
Witness to a Cheater
Your personal values are becoming stronger than this friendship.
That’s the issue, and it often arises in a friendship with someone who cheats, lies, steals, bullies, or does something that’s hard to repeatedly accept.
You’ve reached this point.
Tell her so… based on your own priorities. Say that if she cheats on supposed loved ones, you don’t want to hear about it.
If her reaction is to end the friendship, then that’s where this is headed anyway. Loyalty isn’t her strong point.
I’m 57, long divorced with two grown boys. I came to Canada from Britain with my husband when I was 22.
I’m now regretful of almost everything I’ve done in my life, the decisions I’ve made or not made.
My children have grown up here with no relatives around, and they have no connection with anyone except me.
My ex-husband hasn’t spoken to his sons in six years, for reasons we have no clue about.
I’m disappointed in and for my sons, their careers, and finances.
I realize that we should’ve returned to the UK when they were young and before we separated.
I’m very disappointed in myself, my career hasn’t been successful. Financially, it’s not good either.
I know I cannot change the way things have gone, so all I want is to accept my life and be at peace with it.
How can I not cry and dwell on what a mess I’ve made?
Get to counselling as soon as possible and learn that you are NOT responsible for all that you mourn.
What you are responsible for is your life from right now. That’s why a doctor’s visit is also needed, because otherwise you are letting yourself slide deeper into depression.
There may be a health factor that has you so blue and is treatable fairly easily. You won’t know unless you check it out.
Then, a process of talking out some of the past will help you see other circumstances that shaped how things turned out - including your two sons’ own personalities over which no parent has total control.
You have years ahead which can be satisfying, healthy and happy. Look forward, and get help to stay on that track.
FEEDBACK Regarding the “other woman” waiting on her married lover’s promises for three years (April 20):
Reader – “Your reader’s feedback of May 16 struck a chord with me.
“While my lover wasn't married any more, I was still seeing him for three years, and we lived together for almost two years.
“But none of those discussions she recommended “if he were serious about marriage and a new family” ever happened.
(Ellie: The reader had suggested to the previous woman involved with a married lover, that they needed to discuss his financial obligations to his ex-wife and children, and what her involvement as a step-mom, would be).
“We broke up a week ago. I've now read that reader response over and over, as it confirms ending it was the right thing for me, and, that I’d been fooling myself.
“I'm going to keep this column and read it whenever I feel wobbly about deciding to move on.”
Tip of the day:
Friends who flaunt their lack of loyalty often end up losing out.