Agony Aunt

Patricia Marie, MBACP qualified counsellor is a member of The British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy, practising in Harley Street, Essex and Scotland. She has many years experience of dealing with domestic violence, relationship problems, bereavement, depression, addictions, post traumatic stress and many other emotional issues. If you have a dilemma, please email Patricia.Marie@lady.co.uk

My relationship is falling apart

Posted by Patricia_Marie
Patricia_Marie
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on Friday, 17 July 2015
Dear Patricia Marie
I've been with my other half for 6 years and we've been friends for what seems like forever. He's always been a very confident person and I know he can be a bit of a flirt. We've always joked about it before and I've always trusted him, but now I feel he's taken it a bit too far and is taking advantage of my laid back attitude. Whenever we go out he ignores me and speaks to other women instead and some of our mutual friends have mentioned to me how inappropriate he is. Also, he left his iPad connected to Facebook when he went out the other night and when I went to use it there were countless messages from women I'd never even heard of on the screen. I didn't even know he used Facebook that much. I don't want to speak to him about it and make things awkward as we're due to get married in a month. Also I think I'm worried about what he'll say. However, I feel he deserves to be confronted as it's not fair and I'm doubting whether he's the right man for me to commit to. I can't believe this is happening and I feel completely overwhelmed. It's like I don't know him anymore. Please help me. I want to get to the bottom of this, even if all I discover is that I'm overreacting. Thank you.

Patricia Marie says...

Finding messages from women on your partner's Facebook does not necessarily reflect how he feels about you. It's more likely this type of social networking has become a habit to him. However, to initiate a stable married life, it's a habit that needs to stop. After all, I doubt he would approve if you were chatting online to different men. You need to confront him and set some boundaries, which your relationship clearly doesn't have, and take responsibility for the way your partner has been treating you. It seems you have allowed him to behave unreasonably until it suited you to question otherwise. As harsh as this may seem, the reality is unless you start to respect yourself, nothing in the relationship will ever change, and you are wise to question matters now, before getting married. You both need to have a serious talk about the future you are planning together, as communication is key to a relationship's health, and speaking openly about concerns should help reduce your anxiety.

Although expecting your future husband to make you happy all the time is unreasonable, being with the right person should bring a sense of security as well as fun and laughter. You will know you're marrying the right person if he treats you with care and respect, and you don't feel the need to monitor his phone calls or computer. Nevertheless, it doesn't mean that the two of you won't have problems to deal with. A successful marriage is not just about sharing the good times, but dealing with the difficulties life brings, and bonding from such experiences.

Sometimes real problems surface nearer the wedding date, because you're moving closer to a lifetime commitment. By ignoring them, or putting them off, you may be trying to convince yourself they'll go away by themselves. Please don't allow yourself to feel pressurised, and let the cost of any financial losses influence your decision in any way.

Remember, doubts don't mean doom, but must be addressed. You are right to be feeling overwhelmed and anxious, but anxiety and doubts are not the same thing. If you are really unsure about getting married, believe in your instincts, be strong and take action.
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