Changeability Breaks His Heart
Q: My girlfriend and I have dated for two months, and just three weeks ago we broke up over another guy. Last week she came back to me crying saying how much she loved me and wanted to get back together. I have always loved her so much and I want to marry her. We got back together later that day and had sex. For the next few days we hung out, talked and more. Then Friday night came and she went out with a girlfriend, then Saturday came and she hung out with the same girlfriend and two Abercrombie models in her girlfriend's dorm room and slept there. That same day she called me her man and said she was happy being with me. She hasn't really talked to me since that day. Just today she talked to me on the internet and said she was ignoring me because she wanted to teach me a lesson. What lesson could she be teaching me other than breaking my heart? Isn't it wrong to have guys other than your man to sleep over? Why could she be acting like this? She has bi-polar disorder and depression. -- Tom, 20
Dr. Susan: You dropped that bombshell of your girlfriend's emotional problems at the end of your letter, Tom, as if they might be inconsequential. Bi-polar disorder is a major illness, and it would help you if you made the effort to look it up and found out all you can about it. Because it's possible that some of the volatility and strangeness your girlfriend has exhibited is a result of her disorder. You can expect your heart to get "broken" repeatedly until you learn how to speak directly to her and until she's able to communicate openly and clearly with you. If she's supposedly "teaching you a lesson," which by the way is not very mature of her, then she surely needs to tell you what you've done wrong. If she wants you to trust her, then you're right, she shouldn't be sleeping in the same room as other men without an extremely good reason. From what you've said, I can't tell what she actually feels about you, but I wouldn't think of buying a wedding ring for a long while yet. You don't know her nearly well enough.
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Advice for Her
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Susan K. Perry, Ph.D.
Susan K. Perry, Ph.D., is a social psychologist, relationship expert, and bestselling and award-winning author. Her books include Loving in Flow: How the Happiest Couples Get and Stay That Way, and Kylie's Heel, a novel for adults.
Pamela G. Chollet, Ph.D.
Dr. Pamela Chollet has a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and Master degrees in educational psychology and fine arts. Her passion has been helping people face and get through those times when they feel trapped and unable to move forward.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D.
Anna Charbonneau, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist, stress management expert, and author. If you're feeling overwhelmed, stressed out, or struggling to make changes in your life, Anna can help.