It’s time again for “Dear Wendy Updates,” a feature where people I’ve given advice to in the past let us know whether they followed the advice and how they’re doing now. Today, we hear from “Anxious About Love” who was embarrassed when she said “I love you” to her boyfriend of five months, and he responded with, “Are we there yet?” Keep reading to see whether she finally heard those three little words.
I found a job in the same city (not in the US) so that we could be together. I will still take the job — it’s a fantastic opportunity for my career — but clearly the personal reasons for moving to a new city are no longer there. I’m nervous and less excited now, but I’m trying to focus on the positives at this point.
I wish it was happier news, but thank you to the DW community for your advice! I suppose I should have seen a red flag earlier in the relationship (what’s up, hindsight?) but he did say “I love you,” several times and I trusted in those words. — Duly Duped
Very sorry to hear of this betrayal, but I hope you can move on swiftly and enjoy your new job at least. Good luck! Lesson to everyone: Beware of someone who says “Are we there yet?” or something similar when you make an expression of love. There are other, much kinder, ways you can accept such a statement without replying with the same sentiment if you aren’t ready.
If you’re someone I’ve given advice to in the past, I’d love to hear from you, too. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with a link to the original post, and let me know whether you followed the advice and how you’re doing now.
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If you have a relationship/dating question I can help answer, you can send me your letters at email@example.com.
csp December 10, 2012, 1:24 pm
This is one of my biggest LDR fears. I bet this exact thing happens way more that people think.
bethany December 10, 2012, 1:46 pm
I tend to agree with you, because I totally did that when I was younger. I was in an LDR in college, and I had 2 bfs. My “real” boyfriend, and my college boyfriend… Clearly a jerk move on my part. I wouldn’t recommend it!
bethany December 10, 2012, 2:29 pm
What happens on a deleted thread stays on a deleted thread!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
bethany December 10, 2012, 2:30 pm
And yeah, it was probably around then, too.
Addie Pray December 10, 2012, 3:09 pm
SHIT you’re right. Ok, my punishment should be I’m not allowed to read the next deleted thread. Sigh.
Addie Pray December 10, 2012, 4:59 pm
Wendy removed it, yes! Take that, you idiot who clearly was someone other than AP for violating the sacred rule of deleted threads!
csp December 10, 2012, 2:44 pm
Bethany – I kind of did the same thing in college. I was really shady. REALLY Shady. There was an exboyfriend of mine who was sent to Iraq. He and I reconnected right before he was deployed and we wrote emails back and forth and chatted online. Nothing was ever made official but I sent care packages and said how much we missed each other. I would then go out with local guys and neither was the wiser. It was so shady but I was 18 and not thinking about the consequences of my actions. maybe that is my fear with them because I know I am capable of doing it.
katie December 10, 2012, 3:00 pm
how is that shady? you reconnected with an ex, helped support him through a deployment, never officially committed to him, and continued to date other guys?
that just sounds normal.
csp December 10, 2012, 3:17 pm
yea, but I never discussed what I was doing either. There was no question that I lead him on and also the guys I was seeing. The guy in Iraq I just believed that you never have hard conversations when someone is deployed, so i didn’t.
wendykh December 14, 2012, 2:20 pm
Don’t worry, he was probably shagging other girls. I’m not saying that to be mean but military men are not exactly known for sexual fidelity and for all the “omg bad soldier!” drama over it when a high ranking one gets caught, the military pretty actively encourages lots of fooling around.
theattack December 10, 2012, 2:52 pm
Yup, That’s what I did the first time I dated my fiance way back when. Ultimately I just wasn’t ready to deal with the serious feelings we had at all, but especially not in an LDR. LDRs really exacerbate already existing issues.
GatorGirl December 10, 2012, 3:08 pm
Yup. Totally had a 2nd bf while my “real” (HUGE asshole)of a boyfriend was studying abroad. Come to find out he was sleeping around on me so I never did feel that bad about it…
katie December 10, 2012, 2:09 pm
honestly, you do? i dont. i feel like this is a kind of rare occurrence of shitty people being shitty…
csp December 10, 2012, 2:39 pm
It makes me think of old time traveling salesmen who had families in different towns and they only find out at the funeral. yea, it does. I just think it is WAY too easy to cheat. Obviously this is not for all cases or even most cases but yea, it would be in the back of my head.
EricaSwagger December 10, 2012, 2:43 pm
It’s really easy to let someone else fill the void left by your long distance bf/gf. It’s really easy. You miss them, you get weak, shit happens. Obviously not to everyone but… Yeah, it happens a lot, especially in those “away at college” LDRs. And having a moment of weakness and needing companionship (coughcough being human) doesn’t automatically make you a shitty person.
katie December 10, 2012, 3:02 pm
sorry, but a year long relationship i dont categorize into “shit happens” or a “moment of weakness”. a year long relationship is a deliberate thing…
this guy dated two people at the same time for at least one year while (assuming) telling each of them that they were exclusive. that is not only a shitty person, but a serious, serious character flaw…
csp December 10, 2012, 3:22 pm
you are totally right. This was deliberate deception.
EricaSwagger December 10, 2012, 4:39 pm
I meant that in general, LDR cheating happens more than you think. I wasn’t talking specifically about this year long scenario. Hopefully that doesn’t happen much. But cheating definitely does.
va-in-ny December 10, 2012, 9:50 pm
Happened to me! I was with him for 4 years, mostly long distance.. and he was with someone else for 2 of them. And I had no idea. Seems ridiculous, but I seriously didn’t know. Someone that sets up that kind of deception (and keeps it up for that long) is seriously flawed. (and MEAN!)
Addie Pray December 10, 2012, 3:12 pm
I can definitely see how that happens. You become friends with someone of the opposite sex, you become close, you’re together all the time, you share the same experiences, you feel emotionally distant from your already-physically distant SO, oops you get drunk and kiss new friend, you think you might be in lurve with new friend…. Somewhere around there I would assume end the LDR and start the new relationship, right? This LW’s BF didn’t seem to do that.
GatorGirl December 10, 2012, 3:11 pm
I bet it happens a lot more then I would expect. Especially with college aged people and people who travel for work regularly.
Kate B. December 10, 2012, 5:43 pm
And this is precisely why I will never have an LDR. Tried it, it does not work for me.
TaraMonster December 10, 2012, 1:41 pm
Whhhoooaaa. I did not see that one coming! WTF!
I usually hate when people say variations of “your ex is such a dbag!” immediately following a breakup because ya did date the guy for a while, but seriously- what.a.dbag. That’s a really shitty thing to go through and I hope your new job and new city are just what you need and everything you want. Sending e-hugs your way!
bittergaymark December 10, 2012, 1:42 pm
What did the letter from the girlfriend say? That’s what I wanna know…
theattack December 10, 2012, 2:33 pm
I was wondering the same thing, but since the LW didn’t specify, I’m betting it was an email just notifying the LW that she exists.
camorzilla December 10, 2012, 2:34 pm
Me too! Like how did the girlfriend find about her enough to send an email?!
SallyS December 10, 2012, 1:52 pm
Oh, no! Sorry this didn’t turn out well, LW! But I’m glad you’re still able to be excited about the positive career move, even if it’ll be a different experience from what you intended.
Best of luck to you!
SweetPeaG December 10, 2012, 1:54 pm
Ouch… sorry to hear this! Try to look at your new job and your new city as an exciting adventure! It can be fun if you really embrace it. I take it this other woman dumped him when she found out about you? Maybe you and Danielle could become friends?
Le Pinch December 10, 2012, 1:55 pm
That really sucks LW. I still can’t understand what kind of thrill people get from screwing around on someone like that. Unfortunately, it happens all too often. I wish you the best of luck on your move LW, may it be the start of something better in your life.
Addie Pray December 10, 2012, 2:05 pm
Yikes, I’m really sorry, LW. I always wonder how people find the time to maintain TWO significant others. I mean, I get that it’s easier when one of your SO’s is long distance, but still. Did you ever talk on the phone or Skype during hours you’d expect him to be alone, like late at night or early in the morning? If he had a girlfriend, I would assume no, because I would assume she’d be there. I think it would be exhausting for him to cover her up from you and vice versa. But like BGM asked above, what did the other woman say?! We need details. I hope you both dumped his ass.
Fabelle December 10, 2012, 2:26 pm
I feel like I need more details on this letter! I mean, da-amnnn. Like BGM, I’m wondering what the fuck the e-mail from “Danielle” said? Was it some Brandi/Monica The Boy Is Mine situation where both girlfriends discovered each other’s existence in some awkward-ass way? (sorry, I was like 9 when that song came out, but clearly the music video made an impression)
If that’s how it was, then I at least hope you & his other girlfriend dumped him in some creative way & can now commiserate over what a douche he is!
LW December 10, 2012, 3:12 pm
The email I got from “Danielle” was a very simple note saying she was his girlfriend who just visited him overseas and they used a guidebook I got him. Mutual friends saw pictures of us and he assured her I was just a “friend who liked him but nothing more,” and she was just not convinced so she sent me an email. We both immediately told him to go to hell and have talked a bit about deciphering the details and lies. He and I would often talk during the day via phone or online, and video chat in the evenings. I have no idea how he pulled it off.
Unfortunately I’ll be in very close proximity to him in my new job but I don’t have to see him and I’m choosing not to dwell on the negative of him being there but the many other positives about everything in my life! We’d talked about marriage, so I’m so happy THAT bullet was dodged!
iwannatalktosampson December 10, 2012, 3:30 pm
Wow good for both of you for believing each other and not going against each other. I hate when women fight over men – whenever that happens there’s never a good prize at the end of that battle.
iwannatalktosampson December 10, 2012, 3:31 pm
Also, per us, thank you for multiple updates. You can share more details if you want, I won’t be mad.
GatorGirl December 10, 2012, 3:38 pm
Wow. So he had two LDRs going at the same time? I wouldn’t put it past him to have had a local person too.
Kudos to you for handling the situation like an adult!! Congrats on the job!
Fabelle December 10, 2012, 3:41 pm
Whoa. I’m so sorry this is how your situation turned out, but I have to say—it’s pretty awesome how you guys teamed up to expose this guy’s lies & then told him to f off. You handled it very nicely!
sarita_f December 10, 2012, 3:45 pm
Thank you for indulging the rubberneckers.
“We both immediately told him to go to hell and have talked a bit about deciphering the details and lies.” <— Right. The. Fuck. On.
I hope you're able to move on from this wiser but not jaded. I also have a hunch you and Danielle might become fast friends out of this.
bittergaymark December 10, 2012, 3:51 pm
Wow. How great that she was so level headed in her letter to you — as were you in your response… Anyway, yeah. You dodged bullet. So did she…
iwannatalktosampson December 10, 2012, 3:57 pm
Holy shit LW did you see this?!?! BGM gave you a kudos. Consider this your lucky day.
See all other LW’s? It is possible. Now smarten up. A BGM high five is out there for you too.
lets_be_honest December 10, 2012, 4:00 pm
I always thought Aim Higher just meant Try to Get a Kudos from bgm?
bittergaymark December 10, 2012, 4:04 pm
Honestly. Really? It’s not that hard. All more and more LWs need to do is, you know, act like this LW did. She behaved like a fucking grown up. But yes, I must now say BRAVO! to this LW. As apparently acting like a grown up is rather difficult — if now downright impossible — for most Dear Wendy LWs as of late… 😉
katie December 10, 2012, 4:06 pm
haha, again, with the chris rock bit- you arent allowed to brag about acting like an adult. your just SUPPOSED to do that!
LW December 10, 2012, 4:40 pm
That *does* make my day! I’m honestly not sure how else someone would respond. Although I’m sure I could come up with some crazy scenarios…
A few more details for other questions in the thread:
Yes, she and I are becoming friends in a strange way. I wouldn’t have expected it but hey, you never know where you’ll meet a friend!
He and I had an extensive talk about cheating and LDRs before dating, and I made it very clear (and he “agreed”) that we were exclusive/monogamous from Day 1 before I could even consider it.
There is likely a local girl now (she saw an extra toothbrush at his place when she visited), and there may even be a girl in yet anOTHER US city. Yes, the traveling salesman came to mind seveal times!
Not one of his friends knew what was going on, and none of them will speak to him now.
bittergaymark December 10, 2012, 4:52 pm
The most likely DWLW response would be one of these three…
A) Blame the bitch. You know, make it all about how Danielle was this hideous skank-ass shrew monster who was deliberately trying to steal YOUR man through her slutty and scandalous ways.
B) Simply REFUSE to believe Danielle. To just KNOW instead that she is totally lying and that SHE’S merely some desperate and pathetic women whom Pete took pity on and befriended. And what’s his thanks? She’s ruthlessly trying to destroy the best relationship of his life. But you’re on to her and so she’ll NEVER get away with it now.
or finally C) You fully accept that there was cheating going on. But that it was all YOUR fault… If only you hadn’t been so far away… if only you had skyped with him twice a day instead of once, he’d have never cheated! But now that you are moving there, you just KNOW that love will conquer all and you are secretly planning a 2013 June wedding, even though he hasn’t asked you just yet. You simply KNOW he will…
LW December 10, 2012, 5:02 pm
Well you know, I really always thought a spring wedding would be MUCH nicer…
bittergaymark December 10, 2012, 5:22 pm
Moneypenny December 10, 2012, 8:15 pm
Wow, talk about not seeing that coming. Glad you (and Danielle) kicked him to the curb!!