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He Thinks You're Overreacting
February 5, 2007 Ask Dr. Love Advice Column
I have been with the father of my son for about 4 years & he has been so patient and honest, until during the middle of this year when I discovered that he lied to me after I caught him with this lady whom he claims that they were starting a friendship.
My problem is he has been having female friends for quite a time until when I told him that I did not like this since he wasn't willing to let me meet them. He sacrificed some of his female friends but he still continues to make friends with his female colleagues whom he doesn't find any reason for me to meet, but they know our son.
The question is why doesn't he want me to meet these people? I tried to talk to him but he says I am overreacting. Please help because I think that he does not want to be seen with me or he is ashamed of me.
I am very sad to see that your self-esteem is so low that you actually think that he won't introduce you to these other women because he's ashamed of you.
I don't believe this for a minute! There are many other interpretations for his behavior that have nothing whatsoever to do with you. For example, he may be the kind of person who has a great need for space. The friendships that he maintains outside the marriage may give him this sense of space.
Only he can tell you why he doesn't want to make the introductions. I have to say that his refusal to introduce you to these women made me feel suspicious. What does he have to hide? Is it possible that he is cheating on you and calling these women friends in order to throw you off the scent. . . . of other women?
The real problem here comes down to your low self-esteem. Because you feel so badly about yourself, it reverberates in all kinds of unhealthy ways in the relationship. For example, because you don't feel good about yourself, you don't feel entitled to put your foot down and tell him what you will and won't accept. Likewise, I think that you feel that no other man would have you.
These self-doubting thoughts send the message to him that you will put up with anything that he says or does because you don't have the power or confidence to leave him. In this weak place, you are not in a position to make any demands of him, such as that he introduce you to his friends. I want you to hear me. You aren't being treated properly and you should be.
First of all, he is dismissing your feelings and telling you that you're overreacting. In a good relationship, both partners should take each other 's feelings seriously and do their best to listen and understand each person's point of view.
I wrote an entire book, which shows couples how to do just that! Nothing is going to change in your marriage until you entitle yourself to be more assertive with him. You need to tell him that he's not responding properly to you and then tell him how he's supposed to respond.
I suggest that you read my book (Create your Action Plan and you will see a link for the book), so that you are completely familiar with how to communicate what's troubling you and know how he should be listening and responding to you and vice versa.
If he refuses to be more considerate of your feelings, then it's time for marriage counseling. If he knows that you mean business; that you are ready, willing, and able to walk if he doesn't shape up, he'll start paying attention to your feelings very quickly--that is if he wants to keep the marriage.
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