Rose16 asks: I feel like my boyfriend craves to be around other women. I’m really clingy and we have been together for 5 years .. we set up rules and he breaks them and its allowed but when I break rules, he threatens to leave. I have pointed this out to him and he says “You should’ve dumped me when I did it then so it’s your fault” .. I feel that he is very manipulative .. and I am under his spell. Don’t get me wrong, he is always there for me and we have great times together. We get each other’s sense of humour but he completely lacks empathy. He doesn’t care if something he does hurts me as long as he isn’t cheating. The only time he hurts me is when it has to do with another girl. Guys usually don’t understand girls .. we are in our early twenties and girls at that age are easy and sneaky and I check his messages to let him know that certain things he says are triggers for these girls because he doesn’t see the moves they make so he would be lured in the sense of .. if they asked for a lift or a favour then he would do it no questions asked. I probably sound crazy but I let some things go in the past and it made me cry for days because he couldn’t see what was happening and I was right every time about each girl. He deleted a whole lot of text messages from one girl the other day and told me he did it because he didn’t want me to check his messages anymore. There is so much more though. I feel like my heart is too weak to get heartbroken .. even if it is a tiny heartbreak each time. It’s building up and I just want to scream. Do I really wanna throw 5 years away even if I don’t think he is cheating??
Hi Rose16 –
Okay, as seems to happen a lot these days, I’m going to give you two answers. All based on one question: Do you truly believe he’s actually pursuing these other women?
The reason I ask is that a while back, Handsome had met a girl we both thought was The One. They’d been friends years earlier, and re-connected over a shared interest… in caring for dogs! Everything seemed perfect, but she started to get very suspicious about his feelings about some exes of his. And one in particular who he still worked with. Now maybe that ex was manipulating things just as you describe these other girls doing, but he wasn’t remotely thinking about cheating or getting back with her. But every time he’d speak to her or go to work with her, his girlfriend would flip out in jealousy. Eventually, it broke them up. Which was especially goofy, as the ex soon left that workplace and never saw him again.
So if there’s a chance that that’s going on, then the work that needs to be done is in you – to deal with your insecurities and jealousies. Again, you may be totally right about those other girls. But if your boyfriend is faithful, and just trying to avoid conflict with you, he might be worth holding onto.
On the other hand, though… “You should have dumped me then so it’s your fault?!” Oh I don’t like the sound of that at all! That makes me think he’s the manipulative one, not those other girls so much. And if that’s the case, then my wish for you is to build up the self-esteem and self-worth to Kick Him To The Street!
You say he doesn’t have any empathy. Well, then do you really want to be with him? It’s great that he has a sense of humor, but you can turn on a TV and find something to laugh at. You call yourself “clingy;” that makes me think you might be happiest with someone worth clinging to!
So again, I urge you to figure out what’s going on. And if you’re just being so neurotic that you’re driving him nuts, then you might consider seeing a therapist or someone like that, not because you’re crazy, but just to work on the issues you’re still carrying around that make you so scared. But if it’s him doing it – then truly I’d suggest showing him the door.
Either way, I love that you wrote me, and think that’s a first step on the road to what you really need, which is to develop a lot more confidence. Once you have that, this sort of situation will never be a problem for you again.
All my best,