Betrayal and mistrust can lead to some sticky situations within a committed relationship. How do you handle these feelings? Learn how these feelings might manifest and how to improve your relationship through reading advice from a dating expert.
Mistrust and Betrayal in a Relationship
Mrs. Lori, I am a 33 year old single father of two great kids a son (11) and a daughter (5). My question is this, I have been in a relationship with a wonderful woman for two years now and I just found out yesterday that she had dinner with another man on Friday night. Now, she says that it was not a romantic dinner and there was no intimacy at all involved and I do believe her but still I feel cheated on. Is this classified as cheating?-- Contributed by: Thomas
If your girlfriend had dinner with an old friend, then she probably wasn't cheating. On the other hand, if she went out with someone new whom she recently met, then the answer is maybe. At the very least, she is treading in some very dangerous waters, which could lead to her being unfaithful. That is not to say that she is or was -- only that meeting someone in secrecy is dangerous. The fact that she told you after, doesn't diminish the reality that she withheld information until after the fact.
Rather than focusing on whether her going out to dinner constitutes cheating, let's look at this from another perspective: how are you feeling about the whole thing? More than likely, what's bothering you is that her behavior hurt you. She let you down by not telling you ahead of time that she was going out. More importantly, you have your kids to think about. They've gotten to know this woman over the last two years and if the relationship were to end, they would be affected. You might also feel jealous. If her dinner was no big deal, then why did you keep the information from you until after she had already went out? If this doubting is not corralled, it can give way to your imagination. What did he look like? How does she know him? Why this or why that? Jealousy can get out of control and ruin a perfectly good relationship.
Perhaps what you're feeling is betrayed. After two years of being in a relationship with a wonderful woman, she withheld information that affected you, her and your kids. If you feel any or all of these different emotions I've mentioned, it would be perfectly normal. For a relationship to last as long as yours has, there has to be some level of trust built. Now that trust has been lessened by a dinner you didn't find out about until after it happened. Which makes me wonder…
Is it possible that you and your girlfriend view your relationship differently? Usually after two years, a partner pretty much knows that the other is doing on any given day. How is it that you and she don't talk often enough that you wouldn't know what she was doing on a Friday night? Could it be that the two of you are not on the same page concerning your relationship? Maybe she is ready for more of a commitment from you or vice-versa.
I'm thinking that if you don't want to get sideswiped again, it's time for you and your wonderful woman to sit down and have a serious talk about the state of your current relationship. You can begin the conversation by telling her how you felt when you learned that she had dinner with another man. From there you can open the discussion to where you see the relationship going and then ask her where she sees the relationship going. It is important not to let the unspoken remain unspoken.