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Rafael M.T.Therapist
Rafael M.T.Therapist, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 3189
Experience:  MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach
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Im in a relationship for 4 yrs now,my boyfriend got married

Resolved Question:

I'm in a relationship for 4 yrs now,my boyfriend got married last december while we were still dating,lately he told me the reason why he got married and says he wants to be with me,he says I must be prepared to face what ever outcome we are going to face,I need to know if he is telling the truth.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Rafael M.T.Therapist replied 1 year ago.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you. (Information posted here is not private or confidential but public).

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am very sorry to know about this overwhelming situation you have been facing.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Could you please describe what has your boyfriend told you to justify getting married with another woman while still dating you and expecting you to stay with him?

Customer:

He told me that it was an arrangement,that he didn't have a choice but to do it

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

What's his age and his culture?

Customer:

He is turning 28 today and his zulu

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Is he a minor or under his cultural values-beliefs-practices it is normal and common for parents-family to arrange marriages for adult children?

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I see, then that could explain the marriage arrangement, which means if he is living in the UK, he stills remains depending on his native cultural-societal-family values and norms. Where you aware of all this during the years you have been dating him?

Customer:

He told me that when was bit young m not sure what age,he was involved in something that one person on his behalf,I think that person his brother I'm sure,he told me his wife's family is threating to take his daughter if they him cheating.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

If that's the case, how does he justify lying to you and being honest about this serious situation? Cultural-social values could justify some practices in specific scenarios, but they do not justify being dishonest with a long term girl-friend. He was aware of this and chose not to be honest towards you, got married and now expects you to continue to date him while he is a married man. Do your own value-belief systems agree and enable this type of behaviors?

Customer:

I'm so confused about the whole thing,his close friend told me that the guy really love's me and will do everything to be with me.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

The first thing you need to consider here is how well this person respects and meets your core needs and expectations for a long term committed relationship, in consistency with your own personal value and belief systems, otherwise you would end betraying yourself and exposing to be used, neglected and abused, once his behaviors and choices are so far away and could be totally incompatible with who you are, your worldviews and your life style.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

My suggestion is for you not to trust words if they do not totally match reality and consistent actions. In this case he has been with you for 4 years, but regardless this long term relationship he ahs not told you as soon as he knew about it, that he was engaged and going to get married , he chose to wait until now, and he expects you to be with him while he is already a married man, telling you that you must trust him disregarding reality, and that's something most people in your shoes would never accept nor want to afford. But it is only you, who can and need to decide if this is what you want and need from a life partner, with all the limitations, issues and challenges it presents, a reality of being the lover of a married man who sets his family-native cultural values as number one priorities in his life before you.

Customer:

Another thing they married but they don't live together,it a long distance relationship,he spend most of his time with me and recently he starting to introduce me to his family.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I see, then even when you have been together for the past 4 years only recently he decided to introduce you to his family. Is this also acceptable an common practice according to you own cultural values?

Customer:

He says he is tired of living a lie and wants a normal life with me in it.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

It'd be very important for you to assess the pros and cons of staying in this new role, the consequences and issues in the present, and those you would have to face in the future, around commitment, children, family, finances and everything a regular committed adult relationship implies, while aware he is already married to another woman and has chosen to comply with everything such commitment implies, thus many more challenges could come and you would have to take them whether you like them or not.

Customer:

It is hard for me to believe everything he told me,I love him but need to be sure if could him with what his telling me

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Again, words could sound very nice, but if a person tells you that he loves you but is not honest, respectful nor consistent with them, then you need to trust reality and not words. Reality is showing you trusting him led you to be in this present situation, then if you feel able and willing to afford more, then go for it, but be %100 honest with yourself, taking full responsibility for your choices, in that way you would not suffer even more, once you are already aware of what you are choosing to experience.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

The only thing you can be sure about is what you actually see in front of you, concrete reality. Nobody could fake that, manipulate it that easily like with words. Consistent behaviors show you who respects you and who doesn't, who is honest and who lies, who complies with commitments and who betrays them, who uses words to justify behaviors, and who shows responsibility, respect and caring through his behaviors.

Customer:

Today he went away and he said when he returns he will be able to end things with his wife,because there will no hold that they can use over him.

Customer:

He even showed me some test messeges between him and a social worker on the options of keeping his duaghter.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Many people from different cultures migrate to the UK or the US or to other countries, where culture, social values and practices are very different, and they feel deeply conflicted because of the contrast and incompatibilities between cultures, but if they are adults and choose to build their lives in the new country-society, they need to adjust to new cultural-social reality, wile keeping their original values or changing them more or less. What makes of these changes-adjustment something more or less constructive, healthy and acceptable is the level of maturity, accountability and assertiveness people implement in their lives.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I see, then he has a daughter too. Is this his wife's daughter?

Customer:

We are both in South Africa

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Thank you for letting me know. The system shows your location in the UK.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

If this child is his wife's daughter, then his marriage has not been long distance only, he has a core and big responsibility towards wife and daughter. I do not know if you already knew about his daughter before, but it does change your situation for sure, since it means he has one more serious responsibility, not only because he is married but has a minor depending on him.

Customer:

I already knew about the child.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I suggest you to be very careful and take time to see how this situation evolves, to see if he actually gets divorced and takes good care of all his responsibilities as an adult, only then you would know if it is wise to trust him back or not, since what you know now is that he was not honest towards you and betrayed you and the commitment you had.

Customer:

They are not legally married but traditionally

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I see. You would decide what to do not based on what he tells you about reality but because of the reality you see, the concrete behaviors and changes you see.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

That way you would be taking truly good care of yourself and not exposing to further suffering you could avoid.

Customer:

I must wait and see.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Right.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Please get all the help you can from your support system, those people close to you who truly care about you, who happen to be healthy, mature, honest and supportive, since this is not an easy situation at all to cope with, and objective feedback from people who love you becomes very important.

Customer:

U just gave me hope on this situation

Customer:

I will try to keep you updated on what is happeningni'm off to work thanks very much for listening.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

I am glad to know that. I have seen many people from other cultures who feel very conflicted because of issues around arranged marriages and family expectations. Those who choose to take full responsibility for their own feelings, choices and actions, being honest and fully consistent with their actions, are the ones who build healthy and fulfilling relationships and realities even after facing so many tough challenges. Let's see what reality shows you about it.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

You're very welcome. I will be glad to follow up and to support you as possible.

Rafael M.T.Therapist :

Take gentle care.

Rafael M.T.Therapist, Psychotherapist
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 3189
Experience: MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach
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MHT-MHRS-MS-MA Integral Psychotherapist & Life Coach