I’m a young man aged 25 and my girlfriend is 20. We have been together for three years.
Right now we have a problem because I came across some text messages on her phone, sent by my friend with whom we spend a lot of our spare time.
Apparently they have been having 10pm appointments that I was not aware of. When I asked my girlfriend about the late-night appointments she said they just meet to chat.
I then went to ask my friend, who told me that he provides her with ‘counselling’ when they meet.
It worries me a lot because I know the guy is not a real counsellor!
I really love the girl, so what can I do? Nowadays when we’re not together I’m always worried, wondering who she’s with and what they’re doing.
Sometimes I do not sleep and even go to the extent of watching from a hiding place close to her home to check if they are still having their late night appointments! Please advise me.
If your friend is not a professional counsellor then perhaps you should find out what is so pressing that your girlfriend needs to be ‘counselled’ by a non-counsellor that late at night.
I understand that you truly love this girl, but are you sure that she loves you back?
If she does, then perhaps she made a genuine mistake, but that still doesn’t explain why she said they were ‘just chatting’ when you asked her.
This thing is turning you into something else and it’s not looking good.
It’s worrying that you’re not getting enough sleep – it’s even more disturbing and alarming that you have become so suspicious that you have to go sneaking around her home at night.
You have crossed the line from being in love to being obsessed.
You suspect your girlfriend is cheating on you with your friend and are hoping to catch them red-handed, but what if you never catch them?
How much more policing do you think you can do before the stress gets to you? And what if you catch them…what are you going to do with that information?
The more you are disturbed about her, the more you’re going to get yourself worked up.
Do not continue along that path. You need to find something better than constantly obsessing over your girlfriend before you end up doing something you’ll regret.
I suggest you talk to a counsellor.
Please call Heart & Hands of Compassion (73516022) or Lifeline Botswana (391 1290) for face-to-face counselling.
I have been married for a couple of years but my marriage is a mess.
I’ve never enjoyed anything about it. I suspected my husband was a love cheat before the marriage.
I wanted to call it off, but my parents told me to go ahead since everything had been prepared, adding that he would change once he was a married man.
I got pregnant two months after the wedding but my husband told me the baby I was carrying was not his, and that he was going to do a DNA test.
I had no problem with it because I was certain the baby was his.
Then the baby was born – a beautiful girl who looks like him and my first daughter.
He came to love her and forgot about the DNA test.
Things are still sour between us though. It’s been six months now that we haven’t touched, kissed, hugged or had sex.
I suggested we take an HIV test but he is reluctant to take one.
There is no real communication between us and he lies about every little thing. I do not trust this man and the thought of continuing with such a person brings me depression every day.
I am weighing all options including divorce, but feel sorry for my daughters.
However I will put my feelings aside and think about my future and my kids – they don’t deserve to live in such conditions where there is no love.Please help.
When did the love really end, before or after you got married?
Tell-tale signs were there before you got married but you still allowed your parents to talk you into it.
I can only imagine what it must be like to be trapped in a loveless marriage.
It’s your life, you have a right to do what you feel is best under the circumstances.
The children are always the ones who get a raw deal when their parents split up – it’s really sad to see them uprooted from the family life they’re used to, but sometimes it’s for the best because they always notice and pick up on the tension in the home and are negatively affected by it.
Your issue is not one that can adequately be addressed and resolved via email.
You need to make an appointment for face-to-face counselling; for that, please call Heart & Hands of Compassion on 73516022 or Lifeline Botswana on 3911290.
LOVE ON THE ROCKS
Five signs that you your marriage may be on a fast track to divorce.
Maintaining a marriage requires conscious effort.
Just like other relationships, if your marriage doesn’t receive the necessary time and attention, it will deteriorate.
Couples tend to enter marriages with great expectations, often bringing both their own histories of hurt and unmet needs.
The unspoken expectation that your partner will finally love you the way you desire to be loved is often a setup for failure.
Indifference and hostility in a marriage are warning signs that your marriage needs your attention, and the number one predictor of divorce is conflict avoidance.
So, if you and your partner avoid conflict and lack the skills of conflict resolution, your marriage may be in jeopardy.
Marriage andfamily therapists and leading researchers on marriage, have conducted studies over a number of years to determine the predictors of divorce.
Studies showed that these six characteristics of communication predict the likelihood of divorce with a high level of accuracy.
If the circumstances in your marriage fit these patterns, your chance of divorce is great:
Approaching a conversation or conflict with sarcasm, accusations, criticism or derogatory comments is dangerous for a marriage.
Initiating a conversation harshly, will likely result in an angry and hostile ending without resolution.
2.FOUR WARNING SIGNS:These have been identified as contempt, criticism, defensiveness and refusal to cooperate.
Research shows a link between these aspects of communication with your spouse drastically increase likelihood to divorce.
3. ITS ALL TOO MUCH: You and/or your spouse overwhelm each other with negativity that causes an emotional shut-down and detachment from your relationship.
When you or your partner suddenly barrages the other with criticism or contempt, leaving the other feeling shell shocked, this results in disengagement and often, over time, leads to contempt.
When one or both partners become overwhelmed and flooded, it results in physiological changes in the body.
Increased heart rate, a secretion of adrenaline and an increase in blood pressure occur and these physiological responses make it difficult or impossible to effectively resolve conflict.
Flooding triggers a fight or flight response, resulting in disengagement and/or deliberate obstruction by your partner.
5.FAILURE TO REPAIR: If conflict is not resolved or avoided by one partner, the likelihood of divorce increases.
Conflict resolution is vital in maintaining a healthy relationship. Refusal to cooperate shows in the lack of willingness to engage in conversation and resolution around a conflict.