Is This Love??

Respected sir/madam,

I have been in a very happy relationship for two years now, and both of us are very serious. We are sure that we want to spend the rest of our lives with each other. My boyfriend loves me very very much, but recently, I hurt him so deeply that he’s lost his trust in me.

We were in different cities when we fell in love.Let us say that I was in C and he was in G. Recently, I had a chance to visit G but unfortunately, he was visiting my town then. My chances of meeting him were anyway slim and I had a mental misconception that if I went to G, I’d feel much closer to him. We hadn’t been able to talk to each other to our heart’s contents for a while and we were feeling a little empty. We needed to feel closer to each other.

He didn’t tell me he wanted to take me there first (this was my first visit) but he made up a number of other reasons for me to not go. I justified all of them and in the end, he reluctantly agreed. He was angry with me but I wanted to go very very much so I thought that when all the bad things that he was afraid would happen wouldn’t happen he would forget about everything and everything would go back to being normal.

When I finally reached G, I realized that I had made the worst mistake of my life. I had heard so much about the place from him that when I so much as read the name of a road, I missed my boyfriend and cried and cried. I was travelling by bus and I called my boyfriend and cried to him and he was kind and sweet to me but he was hurting and missing me too.

I stayed in G for three days and missed him every second of that I was there. The only way I could distract myself was by talking to a group of boys who were really funny and warm. I generally don’t interact with boys much unless it is for work and he does the same with girls. We prefer it that way and we feel safe and comfortable in our routine. I knew he wouldn’t like my doing it, but I justified it because I didn’t have any proper girl friends with me and well….truthfully, what he doesn’t know won’t hurt him.

I’ve never lied to him before this and I hate myself for doing it now. I took a picture with a boy and I am grinning widely in it. I swear up and down right now that I wasn’t happy there. Sure I danced a little and smiled a little but I kept wishing that I was there with him not with a group of people I didn’t even like all that much.

Anyway, now this picture? I fabricated the truth a little and told him that other people took it by crook and I hadn’t actually posed for it. Yes, I lied to him. But I swear I never have before this.

The next day, I played in the water on the beach and went out at night and he’d told me not to because in that part of the country, they were both very unsafe and stupid things to do. But I completely forgot his strict instructions and did both of those things. I am an idiot.

When I came back home to C, I sent him a copy of that picture and came clean. In my favour, I’d like to say that I was the only one with a copy of that picture and I still sent it to him because I couldn’t stand to lie to him.

He saw it and was very very very hurt. He said he couldn’t trust me anymore because even though he’d asked me not to, I went into the water and went out at night and that if something had happened to me, he’d have lost me forever. He was also very hurt that I took a picture I anyway shouldn’t have but the fact that it was in G, where he and I were supposed to go alone for the first time, made it much much worse.

I was so guilty that to prove to him that I love him very very much I cut myself for the first time in my life. I agree it was the stupidest thing I could have ever done, but…..oh, well. What’s done is done. He got mad about that too. Said I needed a psychiatrist.

He’s ready to give me another chance but he is hurt. And he says mean things when he is hurt and they hurt me and there is simply a whole lot of hurt going around. What do I do? Please help me? I want to make things okay again. He says he I hurt him so much that he is numb and that he is beginning to lose faith in love and that he has no interest in going to G with me or otherwise again because the place is ruined for him. What do I do? That was our honeymoon spot ūüôĀ

Yours sincerely,


Dear Susan,

Wow!, I’m practically out of breath reading this…I can only imagine how draining it is to you actually living it.

Susan, the only betrayal in this whole long story is to yourself.  It is said that betrayal of oneself, in order to not betray another, is still betrayal.  In fact, it is the greatest betrayal of all.

Susan, what does love mean to you?  If you yearn for another, and cannot live a day without that other without crying, does that mean you love that other?  I don’t believe that to be true.  To me, it means that you have handed your happiness to another, believing that happiness is something that is given to you by another.  Susan, dearest Susan, we create our own happiness, and misery, given our thought about a thing.

It feels to me as though you are allowing your boyfriend to control your life.  A truly loving partner would have informed you of the dangers in city G, and upon finding out what you did, merely expressed relief that you hadn’t been harmed.  The dumping of guilt upon you is control, not love.  (Well, it IS love, in the strictest sense, since all negative emotion is distorted love, but I hope you understand what I am saying in this context.)

You see, Susan, Love wants for you what you want for you.  If you feel you would enjoy having a wide variety of friends in your life, now, and even (especially?) after you should marry, then your partner should want that for you.  His inability to trust you now is his problem, not yours, because it shows that he wants for you, what HE wants for you, and not necessarily what you want for you.

Just as an aside…I would, personally, question why my partner had so many reasons for me to NOT come and visit in the first place.

As to your cutting.  Obviously you know that that behavior doesn’t really work for you.  It is a symptom of something larger, to be sure.  I would agree with your partner that professional help would be of benefit.  I lean towards body-centered psychotherapy, but there are many good professionals.

Which leads me back to my earlier question:¬† What does Love mean to you, Susan?¬† Not, ‚Äúwhat do I have to do to get someone to love me?‚Ä̬† There is a very good little book, by Neale Donald Walsch, called ‚ÄúNeale Donald Walsch on Relationships‚ÄĚ that I believe could be invaluable in helping you gain insight.¬† It is a very short, easy read.¬† I got my copy for just a little money at an on-line used book store.

Sweetie, guilt, stress, worry, anger, hurting yourself…these are all indicators that something is not working.¬† I have told my daughters what I am going to tell you now…Love should bring Joy.¬† Yes, it takes dedication, and effort, but it shouldn‚Äôt be a constant struggle, especially in the early stages.¬† If it is a struggle from the beginning, consider that it might not be any better going forward.¬† Consider choosing again…and again, and again until you find a relationship that doesn‚Äôt require you betraying yourself to have.


(Therese Wilson is a published poet, and is the administrator of the global website at  She may be contacted at:                                                    

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