Relationship break horror

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Me and my girlfriend decided to take a relationship break from each other because things weren’t going well for us. But when we got together again, after only a week, I found out she’d been dating! I can’t believe she did this. It’s like she cheated on me when she was supposed to be thinking of me.

J says:

Sad and unfortunate story, and one I’ve heard before. Taking a relationship break is not a magic pill for a troubled couple. It’s an opportunity for time out, but what you do in that time out is a grey area, unless you discuss this FIRST, before taking time apart.

Had you discussed what was acceptable and what wasn’t, you would both have been perfectly clear on how to behave. Your girlfriend may or may not have known that dating during your relationship break was not acceptable to you, but some of the responsibility lays on you for not making this clear.

The bottom line is that you should BOTH have discussed this. You didn’t and now you’re facing a new issue.

  • Did she cheat on you?
  • Could she have checked with you first, before deciding to date somebody in your absence?

These questions and many more can be asked but not so easily answered.

  • Could this situation have been averted by setting down guidelines of expected behaviour before you took your relationship break?
    Yes.

Now you have a new situation, and one that only you can answer. How do you feel about what happen, and can you accept that this may be partly your fault, or do you think you may not be able to forgive and forget? Some thinking time is now required.

If you do decide to stick together, you will have to forget what has happened – hanging on to this will cause resentment in you and will ultimately cause you and your girlfriend undue stress.

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