ORIGINAL LETTER posted 4/15/14:
How do I get my relationship with my girlfriend back on track? I cheated on her and now we’re trying to fix it…. or I’m trying to fix it. I’m really having a hard time getting it back to normal. Last June is when she found out about me cheating. We didn’t speak for a month. Â I eventually convinced her to give me another chance.
I really do love her. Before she caught me cheating, she had NO jealousies or insecurities. She never gave a second thought to me going places alone. Now, she fears that when I’m gone, it could happen to her again. Â I understand her feeling that way. Â It’s a consequence of my actions.
She said that she will give this a chance until December to see if it can all be worked out. I agreed right away. Â I looked at it like this is my chance to prove to her that I won’t do it anymore. Â But, I also feel like this won’t be enough time for her to feel like I’ve proven anything. Â I SWEAR, I have changed myself! Â I don’t want to be a cheater. Â I want her! Â I need your help though. Â Is there ANYTHING else I can do to make her feel safe again? Â IS there anything I can do between now and December to make things right?
I’m trusting you because of the mature way you have handled the other letters and it’s also really important that I hear from a woman.
ORIGINAL RESPONSE posted 4/15/14:
I’m sorry you guys are going through this. This is a defining time for “the vase.”
See,Â I look at women like beautiful vases that you were lucky enough to have in your home.. When a man decides to cheat, he picks up the vase and throws it. It being in the air for 4 seconds represents the time you spend cheating. Â Maybe that vase will land in a blanket of lies where it will not break and it has no idea that it was even put in harms way.
Many times it just shatters and there is no way to repair it…the broken pieces are left on the floor. Â Then there are the ones that try to glue it together. Â That’s where you are at with the vase. Â 2 possibilities can result from the glue you have put on this vase. 1) It will stay together and ACTUALLY be stronger in the broken area as a result of how carefully you worked on it. Â Or 2), the original crack will splinter into other problem areas and never be able to recover.
What I need from m you right now is to send me another note about what exactly you are doing to mend this beautiful vase you have broken. Â I want to make sure what you are doing is right. Â And I’d like to offer advice on how to give it the strongest glue ever! Â I WANT this beautiful vase to be restored, because I feel like you are sincere.
Hang in there…
Everyone, please post your comments. AND STOP THROWING THESE VASES! Â Is the four seconds it’s in the air (also a symbol of your time in bed) worth the chance of destroying it forever?
I’m sorry for the delayed follow-up to this weeks advice letter. I was waiting to hear back from Paul. Unfortunately, I didn’t here from him. My gut is telling me that things made a turn for the worse.
Guys, if you are ever in this situation, you have to give things some time. I HATE when guys say, “Look… either forgive me or not…and if you forgive me, you gotta be over this now.” No. It doesn’t work like that. People that have been hit by a car, don’t just walk out onto the road with the same confidence. They are super cautious for a long time. If YOU want to keep HER after YOUR mistake then you have to be willing to put in the work. What you should say to her in the beginning is, “I’ll do WHATEVER it takes to make you feel safe again.”
Of course, at some point you need to “move on.” Move on means that she can’t throw it in your face in arguments. However, if you go out with friends and she still gets scared, you can’t get angry with her….that’s how she feels. Here comes the tough news for all the cheaters out there: SHE WILL NEVER go back to the way she was when she felt 100% safe and confident with you going out with your friends. Let’s go back to the vase analogy. After you break it, is it exactly the same as the day you picked it up? No. It’s different. It can still exist, but it has changed.
If you are kind, understanding, patient and show your girl that YOU have changed, you do have a chance at being in a great relationship. I know this because it happens all the time. But, I also know that she will always have a fear….could be tiny, tiny, tiny….with each year it gets smaller and smaller…but it’s still there. If you can’t deal with that, maybe you should move on….and in your next relationship, don’t pull that shit.
I do want to add this: if you put in the work…if you are kind and sweet and you are patient with your girl’s recovery, and you have TRULY changed, she needs to stop bringing it up. I’m not sure what that amount of time is. I would say, if you have changed and have been kind and you girl still throws the past in your face 3 years later, you need to have a talk with her. You need to tell her, “I’m truly sorry for my mistakes. I get that you still have some fear….but I will not be punished for the rest of my life….if you won’t allow it to move forward at some point in the near future, I will be moving forward on my own.”
Great letter this week! Keep them coming!!
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