In a feature I call “Your Turn,” in which you, the readers, get to answer the question, I’m presenting the following letter without commentary from me:
The problem is that over the course of the past four months, I have caught him speaking to other women inappropriately via text, email, and chat, on three separate occasions. Once with an ex-fling, once with a girl he’d met online (who turned out to be 17!!), and once with his BOSS (yes, really). We had a long talk about our relationship, and why he was doing these things (he says that it’s just the way he relates to women, and that he gets a thrill out of flirting). I wasn’t completely satisfied with any of his reasons, and felt really disrespected, disgusted, and disappointed in him; it’s hard to reconcile this dishonest behavior with the awesome guy I know and love. He promised to cease and desist, and I decided that I wanted to stay with him and work through it.
Through none of these periods of flirtation was he any less attentive to me, but lately, doubts have begun to creep in, and I’ve been finding myself getting really paranoid. We’re not living together this summer, as I took a job in the city, and he’s finishing up grad school an hour away, before moving to the city to join me, and when I don’t hear from him by a certain time in the evening, the thoughts that creep through my head are unpleasant ones…
How do I really get past these feelings of insecurity and suspicion? This is the first time I’ve dealt with anything like this, and I truly want to forgive him. Any advice would be appreciated. It’s difficult to take a step back, and see the situation objectively. — Suspicious Mind