I’m a single father of an 11-year-old son. His mother isn’t in our life any more.
I’ve been dating a woman fairly seriously for the past two years. We had some differences. I’m very protective of my son.
About two months ago, I felt that she was pulling away. She denied this but wasn’t always answering her phone when I called, nor returning texts in a timely way.
She gave me excuses – she wasn’t feeling well, was busy helping her parents, etc. I didn’t feel she was being honest.
Then, I heard some gossip at the club where we initially met, that she’d been seen with the tennis teacher from whom we both took lessons.
When confronted, she said she’d been taking extra lessons she forgot to mention, and that he asked her to stay late, as confiding in her about a personal problem.
I drove to her house early the next morning. He was just leaving. She said he’d dropped off her racquet which she’d left at the club.
It was an obvious lie and I walked away from the relationship.
My problem is that I’m having trouble getting over her.
Of course you’re hurt! When someone close becomes less available, offers excuses, and is dishonest and cheats, it’s a blow to pride, self-worth, and your equilibrium.
It takes time to absorb the shock, and carry on with daily routines.
Distrust stays on with the pain, and that’s why it’s important for you to heal.
This woman has shaken your judgement, but that doesn’t mean you can’t move on, and eventually find someone honest and trustworthy.
Your being “very protective” of your motherless son is essential. Someone who’d blatantly lied and cheated mid-relationship, is no longer a good choice as your next partner.
I was in a three-year relationship with my high-school classmate. It involved emotionally draining mental and physical abuse. I ended it in 2017.
I focused on my kids, job and God. In 2018, I met an older man in another city who’d recently lost his wife and was looking for “a friend.”
We kept in contact, and ended up getting married. But he started having angry outbursts mainly when my younger child misbehaved. He’s 55, with no children. I’m 36.
He’d get angry for simple things like slamming doors then keep apologizing. He takes good care of us.
Recently was his anniversary with his late wife of 32 years, and he paid his respects at her grave. That same week was our anniversary, which he didn't acknowledge at all.
I was upset as the first year should be the most memorable. Also, I’m here alive - cooking, cleaning and doing wife duties.
I told him all that and he said he felt ashamed and got flowers but I said I don’t appreciate them now because I have to quarrel to get them.
It’s understandably hard for you to appreciate the lasting imprint on someone of a 32-year life with another.
This man clearly values you, has married you, and cares for you and your children (and apologizes when he overreacts).
Yes, he should’ve acknowledged your anniversary but tried to make up.
Don’t let your long-ago experience of abuse determine your reaction. When a man in mid-life who never had kids takes on a woman with children, and is trying to learn better reactions, he’s committed to you.
You’re not “unappreciated.”
If this is still a healthy situation for you and the children, forgive him.
FEEDBACK Regarding the woman whose boyfriend’s involved with his ex-wife and a woman whose child he fathered (July 26):
Reader – “I cannot believe you didn’t say, “Run, girl, run!”
He’s a player, extremely jealous and controlling!
“She has a life ahead of her which I read in your “tip of the day” but sometimes you need to be harsher!
“He’s a lying deceitful person that shouldn’t be with a 35-year-old wasting her time.”
Ellie - She states clearly that she wants to see him and feel loved by him. To you, she's allowing herself to be emotionally abused.
For me, she's seeking advice, so knows this isn't a good relationship for her as it stands.
He already agreed to seeing a counsellor. They should, because, often, counselling becomes the reality check that helps someone see just how bad things are.
The abused person then gathers strength and moves on.
Tip of the day:
It’s hard to accept that someone deceived you and cheated. But you can move on in time.