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Dear Gay Best Friend,
I’ve been with my boyfriend for 3 years now and we’ve had our ups and downs like every relationship does. His mother passed away recently and now everything has changed. He cheated on me and I asked him why would he betray me like that and his response was that every since his moms passed girls have been pushing up on him and he doesn’t know what to do! And, every time I call him he ignores my calls and text. Now there’s no trust. I love him, but I don’t know what to do. Should I leave him or should I stay? – I’m Getting Fed Up
Dear Ms. I’m Getting Fed Up,
I’m sorry to hear about the recent passing of your boyfriend’s mother. That is very difficult to deal with. I know because I’ve lost my mother and it’s the most difficult experience, and grief anyone who’s lost their mother will tell you. Your mother is the one who is your backbone, your strength, and source of life. We never think our parents will get old and die, but that is the natural order of things. But, yet and still, it is very difficult dealing with the loss of a parent.
Now, in regards to his infidelity and ignoring your calls and texts, that may a result to his dealing with the grief. Everyone grieves differently. People do things out of the ordinary and particularly if they are in a relationship. They may shut down, and become less communicative. Or, they may always talk about the lost parent in the present tense. They may push you away, or depend on you solely. They may rebel and act out because as I’ve said earlier, their source and backbone who’s been there for them through thick and thin is no longer around. Yes, darling, you may be his girlfriend, but, Ms. Honey, you can never replace his mother. Nothing you can do or say will ever replace that bond.
With that, I would strongly recommend getting him into counseling or therapy whereas he can talk with a professional and hopefully open up about what’s going on and what he’s feeling. No matter how much you may pry or offer yourself as a source of comfort, he probably doesn’t want to talk about it just yet. It will take some time for him to open up. It took me years before I was able to talk with someone, or even talk about my mother’s death.
Now, I don’t want you to think I am excusing his behavior because it does not warrant him to cheat on you and mistreat you as well. That is unacceptable. I am a strong advocate that if the trust is gone from the relationship then it’s time to move on. You’ll never trust that person again, and he’s already destroyed yours. He also has to be accountable for his actions, and if he feels the need to sleep with other women, then let him go. Him sleeping with other women may be his way of saying he doesn’t care about anything or anyone. So, he doesn’t see women as human beings with feelings, but as sexual objects, and nothing more. He probably has emotionally and mentally checked out. I know I did when my mother died. When someone loses a parent they really do have a, “I don’t care about anything or anyone,” attitude. It’s not because they really don’t, but again, their parent is no longer around and they feel alone and abandoned. They feel as if no one will ever be there for them. And, if he is ignoring your calls, texts, and the dynamics of your relationship have drastically changed, then yes, you may need to reconsider taking some time apart. It may be difficult to accept and hear, but stepping away and allowing yourself some space, and him some space, may be the best resolution.
Look, Ms. I’m Getting Fed Up, you have two options. You can stay and be supportive and offer yourself as a comfort. Or, you can step away from the relationship, and continue to offer yourself as a source of comfort but from a distance. The choice is yours. You have to make the first step into a healing and healthy situation. Remember, you still have feelings. You still owe it to yourself to be loved and respected. And, it may mean that you sit down with him and break it down. Get real with him and tell him, “Look, I love you, and I’m here for you. I’m sorry for the loss of your mother, and I am not trying to step into her shoes, or replace that void. However, I am not going to sit by and watch you destroy your own life, or do things that are detrimental to yourself, and to me.” So, don’t feel bad for how you feel. Maintain your fabulousness, Diva-ness, and sassiness! You’ve got to stand up and reclaim your power because if you don’t he will continue to run over you and through you. – Straight From Your Gay Best Friend
Make sure to get your copy of my new book, STRAIGHT FROM YOUR GAY BEST FRIEND – The Straight Up Truth About Relationships, Work, and Having A Fabulous Life (Agate/Bolden – October 2010; $15). It is available in bookstores everywhere, and on Amazon, HERE!