In my previous post entitled “How To Have A Better First Date, The Evolution of Relationship Building”, I discussed how my girlfriend and I went on a date and asked each other a ton of various questions on a multitude of topics.
But what I didn’t mention was that one of those questions that I answered, I answered with….a lie.
To this day I am not 100% sure why I answered it with a lie. But I did nonetheless.
It was a question that was asked very early on in the night. I knew I liked her a lot. But I didn’t 100% know how everything was going to work out with us. So a lie came out. And it would come to bite me in the rear down the road.
Somewhere in me I knew that if I had told the truth then, it would have been over for us right then and there. And that scared me.
Let me state that I do not believe in lying. Lying is NOT ok at all. I do not condone it, nor do I tolerate it.
But mistakes do happen. And I made a HUGE one on this one. And a few months later it happened. She found out I had lied.
I was terrified it was over for us. By this time, I was hands down in love with her. More than I have been with anyone in my life. Yes I loved me ex-wife. But nothing in comparison to this one.
Problems and challenges happen in all relationships. And in my opinion, you can’t get bigger than lying about a big topic.
But I believe that even this could be resolved by just being open, and honest. Having good communication is vital to any relationship.
So what exactly was the question and lie that I told? The question was this…”Are you divorced, or just separated?”
And I said I was completely divorced. Which was a lie.
My ex-wife and I had separated, and had drawn up paperwork. But nothing had been filed or signed by a judge. I was still married. And had she known that then, she would not have continued the relationship with me.
My girlfriend is very intelligent and resourceful. One day she was going through my Facebook account, saw something which led her somewhere else, and that sparked her investigating because some dates didn’t add up.
After she found out, I didn’t know what would happen with us. I was terrified beyond belief. I messed up, and messed up big time.
And I made it worse when she confronted me about it, I lied to cover up my lie. This was completely instinctual (self-protection) action. But I didn’t want it to be like that. I want to be 100% open and honest with her.
So the next day I wrote her a very long email telling her everything. She didn’t take it well, nor should she have. I was a wreck mentally for days. As was she.
We were already living together by that point. Was I going to have to leave? Would she not want to be with me anymore? What could I do to make things better?
The only option I had to try and make things better was to tell her the truth, which she already knew. And continue always being honest with her.
I started writing a list of things I could do to improve things. One of those things was to see a personal counselor and go to couples theropy together.
So I can work on becoming a better person. To not hide things, etc.
Right away I signed up for theropy. And continue to do it weekly. Yes there are some weeks I miss it. But I will keep going until….well….maybe forever. I quite enjoy it actually.
We also attend couples counseling as well. Actually just had our first session today. But we will continue to do it for a while to make sure we are not missing any areas we could be working on.
With Christina (my girlfriend), my only goal is to always be open and honest 100% of the time and talk about anything and everything I think and feel.
Even if I know it is going to upset her. No matter what, I have to choose to be completely vulnerable and open.
I also give her 100% unrestricted access to my cell phone. I don’t want her to have to question anything. So if she comes up to me at any point and asks me for it, I give it to her right then and there. I have even given her the code to get into it herself.
The third thing we do besides group and individual theropy, and phone access is every single day we ask if there is something that needs to be said. Or something that we are afraid to say.
These are the types of things I chose to do with her. Because I do believe that we can overcome any problem with good open communication.
Openness and honesty, communication in general isn’t easy for everyone. In this country especially, we are taught to bottle things up, make everything seem perfect all over on social media, and in general NOT be open.
But if you want to have a GOOD relationship with someone you care about, you have to be open. Downright scary vulnerable with them.
Everything might come crumbling down around me, but I will still choose to be honest. Even if it means the end. Because If I don’t, it will be the end. Plain and simple.
Yes we have moved through the issue with our communication. But it is always on my mind. I don’t ever want a repeat mistake like that.
I hope you can learn from my stupid mistakes. We all make them. But hopefully we all learn from them.
This post was previously published on medium.com.
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