My boyfriend and I have been “together” (I put that in quotation marks because he has yet to say we are boyfriend and girlfriend because he’s been hurt before and is scared to let himself be vulnerable. We have a loyalty/trust thing going on) for seven/eight months now. Most of his friends know about me, some of his family does, and we work together. About two months ago, I went through his phone and saw messages from another girl we work with. He doesn’t have feelings for her, but last year she tried to kiss him and he pushed her away. He talked to her the next day and told her she needs to be more professional. Since then, nothing has happened physically, but when I snooped, I found messages with her and they were completely inappropriate jokes, mostly on his part. I asked him about it, and he claims they were harmless jokes.
This broke any trust I had for him, and since then, I’ve been constantly asking him about her. He gets angry but also understands. Things have gotten better, but tonight when he was sleeping, I looked through his phone. I found a message from a random girl he knows (he told me she was just a friend’s friend) asking him to hang out. His reply was, “Can’t, having dinner with everyone from work, I’d rather be with you.” This was a lie, because I slept over that night. I’m sitting here miserable, but I’ve come to the conclusion that I just need to walk away. I understand trust is key in a relationship and I just don’t think I’ll ever trust him. I want to tell him I can’t do this anymore and try my hardest to stick with it. If he can lie to her about what he’s doing and not tell her about me then I am no one in his life and he clearly wants to hook up with her. Am I making the right decision, or does he deserve a second chance?
It sucks that you have to go through this, but to be perfectly honest, I think walking away is absolutely the right decision here. It sounds to me like you already gave this guy a second chance when you first went through his phone and found texts with the girl he works with – you forgave him for his comments, tried to move on and repair the relationship, and now the situation is repeating itself. That shows that he most likely is not going to change, and will do this again if given the chance. Don’t give him the chance!
From everything you wrote here, it sounds like this guy isn’t ready for any kind of commitment at all. If he wanted to keep you in his life as a priority, he would make sure you were a big part of his life, and being hurt in the past wouldn’t stop him from doing that. I understand the fear of being vulnerable, but at a certain point, it just comes off as a lame excuse for why he can’t commit to just one person. In this case, that’s what it sounds like. It’s also pretty suspicious that, after eight months, only some of his friends and family know you guys are together. Eight months is a long time! The fact that everyone in his life doesn’t know about you is a serious issue.
In case you were having any doubts about walking away from him, let me assure you that what he did was wrong. Texting this girl – who he clearly lied to you about – and saying he wanted to hang out when he was with you is almost as good as cheating. He lied to her, he lied to you, and everything about his actions was shady AF. If you give him another chance, he’ll do this again. And who knows? He could very well have hung out with her already. You deserve better than that!
It sounds like this guy wants to have you there for him when he wants you around, but also wants to be able to do what he wants to do – and that’s not acceptable. If you two had a “loyalty/trust” thing going on, he’s not holding up his end of the deal, and you shouldn’t put up with that. You’re right – if you can’t trust him, and you feel the need to go through his phone and then you find things you don’t like, the relationship isn’t worth pursuing. End things, move on, and remember that you deserve someone who will make you a priority. There are definitely times when someone deserves a second chance, but this guy got one already, and he blew it. Don’t let him do it again.
What’s on your mind? Heather can help! Send her your question at email@example.com