He Kept Our Relationship a Secret

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Dear Hoopers,
He works for a broker in Texas and I work in St. Louis, Mo. and we spoke on the phone and in emails for business. Then we began to flirt and exchanged phone numbers. He said he was divorced and available. We rarely spoke on the phone and only if he called me. He said that we would FaceTime or skype but it never happened. I started to get suspicious and asked if anyone in his family or any of his friends knew about me and he said no but they would. That was after we had been talking/texting every day for about 8 months. I asked why I was a secret and he said that I could change my mind. Whatever that means. I then tried to continue on knowing I was his secret but couldn’t respect myself and when I snapped on him he told me goodbye. He blocked me and I got replies advising me that if I continued texting him he would get me for harassment. I feel like I was being played and he had no intention of ever meeting me and that he may still be married. I tried to get him to answer some questions so I could have closure but no reply.  Why would a man keep a relationship with a girl a secret? I cannot come up with any good reasons why and now I feel angry, insulted, disrespected and stupid. I was so in love with him. Would just love to understand why. Any advice to help me get closure is greatly appreciated.
-He Kept Our Relationship a Secret

Dear Secret,
This guy sounds sly and deceitful from the get-go. You may never know what his secret identity was in Texas. Maybe he was married with a family or maybe he was divorced and available. However, that is irrelevant now. He has made a clear point that he does not want you in his life as far as blocking you and wanting to take further action into harassment charges. Your mind and heart are confused about why he would string you along for months upon months. You fell in love and now you can only obsess over why he behaved this way.

Unfortunately, you will never know. It is going to be important to try to find closure without that answer. First and foremost, stop contacting him. Stop giving him any more of your time. You may not feel mentally prepared to move on right now, but dwelling on something you have no control over isn’t going to do anything to help you move forward. Rather than trying to dissect the inner workings of this guy’s brain and why he cut you off, focus on what characteristics of the relationship didn’t work for you.

Stop giving him any more of your time.


You can get over this. You can heal without closure. You can heal without resolution. Find an empathetic friend or family member that you trust to speak to about this. Understand that you are vulnerable and it’s okay to feel hurt. Eventually try to move your feelings of anger into fueling you to be a better you. Invest all of the energy you are wasting on this guy into improving your life and your future.

Dear Secret,
He is definitely still married. When he told you that he would tell his family or friends or whoever about your relationship he was simply trying to buy more time to keep you a secret. Once he figured out that this was no longer possible he went on the offensive. He blocked you and told you he would “get you” for harassment, whatever that means. This was all a lie. He would never call the cops for harassment because this would expose him for the lying and cheating married man that he is.

Sure, this was simply an online relationship, but as you said you were talking every day for 8 months. You weren’t physically involved but you were emotionally involved. This was all an effort to emotionally cheat on his wife and to keep it a secret. It would certainly be best for your emotional health to move on and forget this loser, which I strongly recommend you to do. But I also wouldn’t think it unreasonable for you to track this guy down and expose him for what he was doing. His reasons for going through all of this effort to have a disingenuous and hidden online relationship, are no different than why people seek a hidden sexual relationship. He wasn’t content in his relationship and sought someone else to fulfill his needs. The damage from this kind of cheating is still quite real, to his relationship and most importantly to you.

The damage from this kind of cheating is still quite real, to his relationship and most importantly to you.

-Dr. Ryan

As for you, the takeaway lesson here is that sometime people lie and cheat. This doesn’t mean that everyone will do so and this doesn’t mean that you have to become overly defensive and paranoid in future relationships. But I would encourage you to trust the suspicious gut feelings that you had early on in the relationship. If someone is saying that they will do something and they don’t follow through (like talking on facetime), it is a sign that something is wrong. You can find a trustworthy and faithful companion. Don’t give up hope.
-Dr. Ryan