I Cheated On My Boyfriend But I Don’t Want Us To Break Up: Ask A Pro

Dear HP,

Let me start off by saying I am not a “betch”. I read this site purely because it is entertaining and well written. I don't know if that affects the tone of the advice you dole out, but I thought I'd mention it just in case. With that being said, I would like an objective opinion on what to do right now. I cheated of my boyfriend. There's no sparkly way of saying that, or a way to fluff it so that it doesn't sound as bad, and I'm not going to try to. What I did was really shitty and I'm not going to make myself seem like I'm not a shitty person for doing that. Anyway, I cheated the first week of a relationship I started with a guy I'd been interested in for a while. I was very drunk, and have since stopped drinking but that isn't the point. I then made it worse by waiting five months to tell my boyfriend because I was scared of the consequences. He broke up with me, as would any self respecting person, however we made up shortly after and he “forgave” me. This break up was two years ago.

Ever since then, he goes through my phone, email and facebook whenever he pleases. He doesn't let me hang out with any of my guy friends, all of which I've lost touch with. In addition, he gets offended when I don't invite him places (resulting in huge fights, ending with him accusing me of cheating again), and therefore I have lost touch with most of my female friends as well. I love him to pieces, and we are living together, have a dog, and have created a life together. But as much as I love him, I have to wonder, when (if ever) will he get over this? I am not by any means trying to make what I did seem small or easy to get over, but it has been two years. He has no trust for me and I can't help but feel a little trapped. I feel as though I have no freedoms and that I am his possession. I realize how terrible I am making our relationship out to be, but please understand that I'm only describing one aspect of it to you. He really is a wonderful, caring person and my intention is not to look for a way out. I guess I'm just asking you, will he ever get over this? If so, how do you think I can help the process along? And if not, what should I do? Any advice would be greatly appreciated.

Best wishes,


Dear Confused,

The following are the ways you described your boyfriend in your email:

– He goes through your phone, email and facebook whenever he pleases

– He doesn’t let you hang out with guy friends

– He accuses you of cheating when you hang out with your girlfriends without him and whines like a pussy when he’s not invited

– He is a wonderful, caring person

Which of those things is not like the other? I’m well aware that only describing one aspect of something to a stranger doesn’t paint a complete picture, and I’m sure he’s not a monster or anything. But this one aspect is, um, pretty fucking important. No one, absolutely no one, has the right to go through your personal shit. If anyone ever asked me, that person would be out of the picture, no questions asked. Furthermore, no one has the right to decide who you see and who you do not see. This person isn’t your dad, or even your husband. He’s just your boyfriend, which means as far as God, the court system and the IRS are concerned, he’s nobody. He’s just someone you bang on the regular and (stupidly) share a dog and a lease with. He might not be an awful person, but he’s a shitty, shitty boyfriend.

When someone gets cheated on, they either get over it quickly or never. You either work it out and try to move on, or you part ways. You don’t do whatever the fuck it is you two are doing. He’s not being a controlling asshole because you cheated on him, he’s being a controlling asshole because that’s who he is and your (at this point ancient) transgression gives him a plausible excuse to act that way. It also gives you an excuse to put up with it, because you think “oh, if I hadn’t cheated he wouldn’t act like this.” Fuck. That. You say you’re not looking for a way out, but you also feel trapped. Looking for a way out is practically the definition of feeling trapped. Yeah you sucked when you cheated on him, but two years later he’s clearly leading in the sucking department. If he’s still being a huge pussy and accusing you of cheating every time you use the bathroom without him being present, it’s not going to get any better anytime soon.

People in the comments are going to be all “fuck this guy she should leave him”, and while they’re 100% right I know it’s not quite so easy. Still, your first priority is to at least change the passwords on your shit. He’ll probably pitch a fit (because he sounds like an insecure loser), and when he does, try to explain that you’re a grown ass person who isn’t required to share your private shit with anyone. If that doesn’t help, then I don’t know how much more of a sign you need. Start looking for new places to live. Let him keep the dumb dog.

Kisses (but don’t tell your boyfriend),

Head Pro

Dear Head Pro,

At a party, I finally got to talk to an incredibly cute guy I've had a crush on since last semester, and he ended up asking for my number. After I left, we texted until I passed out that night, and the next day I looked him up on Facebook. SURPRISE – he has a girlfriend!

Why do guys flirt with girls and ask for their numbers if they're supposedly committed to someone already? And how do you know you can trust your man if he's out and about without you?



Dear (also) Confused,

The short answer is that some guys go out and get phone numbers behind their girlfriends’ backs because some guys are assholes. Some guys also flirt to feel like they've 'still got it', which is its own thing but generally harmless. There’s not much else to explain. A lot of times, if a guy’s looking to get out of a relationship, that’s a lot easier to handle when you have something else you can jump directly into. Other times, the guy might not even be aware of his “girlfriend” because she’s a delusional dater. Being FBO with someone is kind of a big deal though, so in this case you’re dealing with someone who’s either extremely unhappy or just a huge douche.

As far as “trusting your man”, that’s not really something for which you should need advice. If you need a “how to” for trusting someone, then you do not trust that person. You can’t “make” yourself trust someone anymore than you can “make” someone like you. If you’re in an exclusive relationship with someone, then that’s the basis of your trust. They might go on to break that trust, but the verbal contract that states “I will not fuck anyone but you” ought to be all you need at the start. Most guys are not scumbags. If they wanted to go behind your back, they wouldn’t be your boyfriend in the first place.

If you’re still worried about it, maybe get in touch with the guy in the first email. He seems like he has some ideas.

Trustworthy kisses,

Head Pro


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