Cheated and Chased

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Dear Hoopers,
My boyfriend of 6 months drunkenly initiated a kiss with a random girl at a party. His friend walked in and interrupted them. He came to my house straight afterwards crying and telling me how much he loved me and that he was scared of losing me. I brushed it off as he was very drunk. It took him two more days to tell me the cause of this breakdown. After which, he suddenly told me he felt trapped and sometimes wondered whether he should be in a relationship so young (we’re both 19 in our second year at college). I broke up with him and for several weeks attempted to cut contact. However, he persistently made efforts to contact me and convince me it was alcohol driven and random and that he did not feel trapped but that he in fact felt insecure about the way our relationship began. The beginning was fraught with insecurity for him as he has always been very intense. At the time I told him it was too much for me, so it originally didn’t lead anywhere.

After a few months we started talking again and that’s when the relationship began officially. He has since admitted he feels I didn’t give him the attention he needed during the relationship and that his actions were to seek validation. He also emphasizes his intoxication. However, he has done a few other questionable things since, which he claimed were out of anger after we argued, ie adding the girl he kissed on Facebook and talking a lot with a different girl he knew liked him. It’s been several months now and I’m struggling with the fact my family and friends know our history. I’m also having a lot of trouble reverting back to the easy going person I used to be. I’ve become anxious and untrusting and wonder whether that will ever fade. He’s one of my best friends and has talked about how he imagines our future, something I haven’t really even thought about. I do love him a lot but wonder whether someone who changed their explanation really could love me on balance as he so passionately claims.
-Cheated and Chased

Dear Cheated and Chased,
Not getting enough attention doesn’t mean that you have the right to cheat. Cheating is never validated. Your boyfriend has self-esteem issues and isn’t taking ownership for his bad behavior. Alcohol is no excuse.

What about this relationship do you see working? I’m getting the impression that you’re ready to let this love fade. Or maybe it already has. You aren’t thinking about a future with him and you find him untrustworthy. It seems to me you’re coasting through a sub-par relationship. So what’s keeping you hanging on? Why are you continuing to endure his excuses?  

A healthy relationship should make you feel good about yourself, not leave you worried and anxious.


A healthy relationship should make you feel good about yourself, not leave you worried and anxious. But more than anything he should make you feel like yourself, or a better version of yourself. You said you want to revert back to the easy going person that you used to be. What’s holding you back?


Dear Cheated and Chased,
This is all a bit much. Your boyfriend was insecure at the beginning of the relationship. He was insecure in the middle of the relationship. He kissed another woman behind your back. Then didn’t tell you about it even though he was caught in the act. Once he did get honest with you, he blamed it on alcohol. Then he blames it on you, because you didn’t give him enough validation. He has a hard time taking responsibility for his own actions.

All I hear from him is inconsistency and manipulation. He says one thing while doing another. He says he wants to be with you but befriends the girl he kissed behind your back. I think he likes the chaos. I suspect that he is fun and energizing to be around, perhaps like a merry-go-round. Just remember that a merry-go-round is only stopped until the next person climbs on.
-Dr. Ryan