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Howard Wise
Howard Wise, Counselor
Category: Relationship
Satisfied Customers: 650
Experience:  Counseling with a compassionate ear and a loving heart.
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Hi. I am really in need of some help/advice and hope that I

Customer Question

Hi. I am really in need of some help/advice and hope that I won't be judged. I am 22 years old and my boyfriend of almost 3 years is 27. We have a 1 year old daughter as well. What I've been struggling with is the face that he is so much older than me and has experienced way more in his life whereas I was pregnant at 21 and feel that I haven't or will not get the chance to. I love him so much and do want to be with him but a lot of things go through my head everyday like, "Is he really the one?" "What if we wouldnt have moved so fast with our relationship" He is the 2nd person I've ever been with and the 1st real true relationship..With him he's been with many other girls and a couple serious ones at that. It makes me feel like I am missing out on what else is out there, like since we have a child together, we have to be together. Also, things aren't perfect. In the beginning we were crazy about one another and things were great, I truly couldn't see myself with anyone else..Now, things are different. He has a really bad temper and sometimes gets physical with me...he also likes to say things to put me down when hes angry with me or we are fighting. My problem is that I tend to bring up his past quite a lot and it drives me crazy all day long 24/7..I can't get it out of my head, thinking if he still cares about the others and what really happened..Just pretty much digging. Ive never been that way to any other guy but him, so I can't tell if I'm just jealous and crazy about him wanting it to have only been me or, If I'm just not happy. When we get in fights and he says the hurtful things or puts his hands on me (never has hit) it makes me want to go out and see what else is out there. Now, I know from what I've said we seem disfunctional and not healthy but, we both love each other so much and our child. This doesnt happen much either..just when things really blow up. He says he wouldnt blow up like he does if I wouldnt bring up the past...and I say I wouldnt bring up the past if I felt safe and secure with him. When its good, its really good. But, when its bad..its bad. I've lately had the feelings of wanting to be with other guys and have actually kissed other men...I feel like I am so young and want to live my life a little before I settle down with him. I know thats selfish but, I dont want to marry him and make the mistake of really cheating down the road..I mean he is only the 2nd guy I've been with and things arent perfect between us. When we first started dating, I was still with my ex kinda and we still saw each other in the beginning of mine and my boyfriends realtionship and hung out even and kissed..I told my boyfriend, He was upset but, forgave me. I felt really bad...I've actually kept somewhat in contact texts/messages with that ex the whole time i've been with my boyfriend too. About a month ago, I also went to a bar with a friend and had 1 too many drinks and kissed a guy. I ended up telling him that too...He was really mad and upset, I was scared because I thought either I would lose him or he would forgive me but things would be different and he would not look at me the same but, he forgave me, we moved on and things were a lot better. Lastly, this past weekend I went out for the 1st time after the previous situation and got pretty drunk and kissed not only 1 but, 2 guys that night. One of them was the ex boyfriend again...I feel so so terrible. I honestly do not know what to do. I feel like If I tell my boyfriend he will definitely not be able to stay with me anymore, he will be too hurt. I know I shouldnt be doing that and it really is mistakes at the time, so if I tell myself "It was just a mistake, do not do it again he will leave you if you tell" then I'll feel bad the day he gives me a ring (which is soon) knowing what I know and not being truthful. I'm so confused..I know there is a reason for what I (keep) doing and I can't honestly say that It won't happen again in the future..then again, I love my boyfriend so much and feel terrible for what I've done and don't want to do it. I think what I truly want is a break from him, to live my life a little, get all these urges out before we are engaged or married then when I'm ready be with him here on out. I know thats not fair to someone though to make them wait for you until they are ready..I just dont know what to do anymore...Am I crazy for cheating? Is it a problem i have? Should I tell, or save my relationship and dust it under the rug and promise myself to never do it again? I feel like what I've been doing is a way of dealing with the problems i have with my boyfriends past, which is unfair, because it was the past and I was no where around. But, the fact that he's lied to me so much about it just gets to me...I feel like when I do what I do with other guys it takes my mind off of what he's done. Almost like we are even. I KNOW THATS BAD though... :( I'm so depressed and feel like my hearts going to explode from all the stress!
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Relationship
Expert:  Howard Wise replied 5 years ago.
Good morning, this is Howard Wise,

You have nothing to worry about - I am not going to judge you.

It sounds like you are unhappy because you are now in a situation that seems to be getting in the way of you experiencing more of life. That is certainly understandable given the fact that you had a baby when you were only 21 years old.

It is understandable that you're having some doubts about spending the rest of your life with your boyfriend. It's possible that if you had not gotten pregnant the two of you might not be together now. Getting pregnant, and having the baby, changed everything. It often does.

I am very sorry to hear that your boyfriend sometimes gets physical with you. This type of behavior is completely inappropriate. The next time it happens I encourage you to file a report with the police. Domestic violence is a serious crime. There is help available for people who are domestic violence perpetrators. Your boyfriend needs this type of help.

Unfortunately, there are some serious issues impacting your relationship. You will not be able to resolve these issues without outside help. I urged her to seek counseling with a licensed and experienced marriage counselor.

I think you are unhappy, and not crazy and jealous. That's why you are acting this way.

It is very worrisome that you are thinking about other guys and you are kissing them. This will only lead to more problems in your relationship.

You are not being selfish by wanting to experience more out of life. Please don't think of yourself that way.

I am also very concerned about your drinking. Apparently, when you drink you make some bad decisions. This will lead to more problems for you. I'm wondering if you are unconsciously trying to destroy your relationship with your boyfriend. You should give that some thought because I think I am on the right track with that.

You're being very clear when you say that you need a break, and that you want to live your life and get all of these urges out before you get married. This tells me that you are not confused, you know exactly what you want to do. It's just very difficult for you now because you are in this relationship and you have a child.

You say that you know it's not fair to him, but it's not fair to him for you to remain in this relationship when that's not what you want to do. That is a recipe for disaster.

You are not crazy for cheating. In my opinion, this is an indirect way to attempt to end your relationship with your boyfriend. So this approach has not worked because your boyfriend is very forgiving.

I don't see your behavior as an attempt to get back at your boyfriend for his past. As I said earlier, based on what you have reported to me, you are not ready for a committed relationship at this time because you want to experience more of life. Your behavior is an unconscious attempt to end the relationship.

I am very sorry to hear that you feel like your heart is going to explode from all the stress. I strongly encourage you and your boyfriend to seek marriage counseling as soon as possible. I also encourage you to participate in individual psychotherapy which will help you to address your feelings, and figure out the best course of action for you now.

Please feel free to post a follow-up question if you like.