I don’t trust my boyfriend

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Q: My boyfriend and I have been going out for a little bit longer than 2 years. One year into the relationship I caught him contacting another girl (ringing and texting). The messages were sent as he was out with me (they were sexual) and he had also tried to contact her late at night. I rang the girl who he had been in contact with and she would not admit to having been with my boyfriend (I asked her nicely and said I was not upset with her because of course she was shocked to hear he had a girlfriend). This girl was rude to me and just said” I’m not saying anything, you will have to talk to your boyfriend whether he has cheated or not.” When I confronted my boyfriend about the messages that had been sent from his mobile to hers, he denied it, saying a friend had borrowed his phone and sent these messages. When he had finished his lies I told him I had spoken to the girl already (as I had copied her number into my own phone.) Then he confessed. He said he never cheated on me and that it was only silly flirting. He begged for my forgiveness and I then told him that if he was serious about our relationship he could always ring her right there and then, with me listening. He did. He apologized for “leading her on” since he had a girlfriend. I then broke up with him since I had no trust for him. A month later I took him back though. We have a rather happy relationship and he shows me that he loves me. However, I don’t trust him. I lay awake at night wondering if he really did cheat on me. All the lies he told me…he might as well have lied about not having sex with this girl. Every day I ask myself if he is a cheater, whether I can trust him and whether I will be hurt again here. I cannot seem to regain my trust for him. I expect him to lie about things every now and then since I have seen what he is capable of. Therefore I check his mobile whenever I can. (Last night I found a picture of a pair of breasts that someone had sent him a few months ago. It was one of those pics that you take with your cameraphone and the photo was taken from above, as if a girl had taken a picture of her own breasts, wearing a revealing top). My boyfriend is a very outgoing and good looking guy and he has had many sexual partners before me. These days I never bring up the fact that I don’t trust him because he gets so irritated with me and immediately tries to change the subject. He said he would do anything to regain my trust after he had lied to me, but I feel like I’m all alone in this process of getting over his betrayel. Please help me, I feel that my worrying is eating me up from inside. It is weighing me down immensely. I love this guy, but some days I just want to scream at him “WHY did you do this to our relationship?” However, I keep quiet and pretend everything is alright. Inside I am still furious with him.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read this. I have nobody to turn to. My friends all told me I should have dumped this guy long time ago. Even one of his mate’s wife told me my boyfriend is a lier.

A: A relationship that does not have trust cannot survive. You can’t live your life constantly worrying about your boyfriend’s fidelity and playing private detective. And he can’t live his life constantly feeling monitored and accused. It’s unclear to me whether your boyfriend is a liar or you are terribly insecure – or both. You are in your thirties so you both have relationship histories that you bring with you to this relationship. At your age, that will be true of anyone you meet. It’s important to look at whether you’ve been so hurt by past relationships that you are bringing suspicions and distrust to this one that are destroying a potentially good relationship. If that is the case, then maybe you should consider some therapy to help you be less anxious. On the other hand, if this man is truly an incorrigable liar, you should stop wasting your time trying to change him. Move on and make yourself available for someone you can trust.
I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 10 Feb 2007

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2007). I don’t trust my boyfriend. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 27, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2007/02/10/i-dont-trust-my-boyfriend/