I caught my boyfriend lying to me about contacting his ex, only the lie happened six months ago and I sort of found out about it using dubious means (reading his email). What should I do about it? Should I do anything about it?
This question hits close to home for me and many people I know. We know we’re in the wrong, technically, for having purposely sought out information that doesn’t sit well with us but then we’re stuck with it and don’t know what to do about it. It’s tricky but it’s my belief that the longer you sit with this piece of information, the worse it will make things for you and your relationship.
You definitely need to do something about this situation and it’s as simple as opening a dialogue about it. But before you even get to that step you need to ask yourself some questions:
1) What was the context of their conversation? Were they just checking in on each other or was there a reason he would have to lie to you about it?
2) If it was a fairly innocent exchange, are you bothered by the fact that he was talking to her simply because you know they have history? Sometimes jealousy, insecurity or fear can cloud our judgement (I know, that is the most annoying implication of all time but we all go through it).
After some soul searching you will be better prepared to confront the situation from the right angle. What I mean is that depending on your findings you will either need to confront your boyfriend, or yourself.
If you feel that he was crossing a line you should definitely address that, and make sure to do so in a calm manner, but you will also probably be put in a position where you’ll have to explain why you crossed a line as well. Reading someone’s emails or private messages is different from seeing their Facebook activity pop-up in your newsfeed or seeing them liking their ex’s pictures on Instagram. Then again, no matter what he has to say about why he is (or was) still in contact with his ex, there’s still the fact that he lied about it.
On the other hand if his conversation with her was really nothing more than two people who once loved each other exchanging a few cordial words, could it be that he lied — or didn’t let you know about it — because it didn’t mean much to him and he felt that it wouldn’t, or shouldn’t, make a difference in his current relationship?
All relationships should be based on trust and communication. Love is secondary (tertiary?) in importance to the foundation of a functional relationship. I don’t know your relationship, and I’m absolutely not doubting that you love each other, but there is a basic level of disrespect going on here no matter which way you slice it. Going through people’s personal things and lying, blatantly or through omission, are both signs of not only mistrust and miscommunication but of disrespect. The way I see it, if you bring it up you are doing your part in bringing honesty back into the mix.
And all of this doesn’t mean it’s too late for a resolution or that everything between you will be covered by a grey cloud from here on out. People make mistakes all the time. Just make sure to leave the lines of communication way open after you have this conversation.
Best of luck!
If you have a love, sex, or dating question or comment for Celina Flores, please give her a shout at firstname.lastname@example.org