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Just need to vent, I guess.


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Things seem to be getting stranger and stranger these past few days.


I've been with my boyfriend for a year and a half now. Through just about all of it we've had an extremely close relationship, very tightly bonded. Everyone figured it's one of those rare matches made in heaven, and until recently I had no reason to think otherwise myself. We had the occasional issue here and there, but managed to work it out with a minimum of stress and problems.


Well, until recently anyway. Big issues started with his mother. When his father decided he prefered men and left, my boyfriend was still young and ended up being trained (uknowingly, naturally) as a substitue husband by his mother. He realized how odd the relationship was and has been trying to wean his mother off from depending on him for everything, and that's where her problems with me started... she became jealous, seeing me as a woman stealing her 'husband' from her. That's been somewhat resolved and set aside to heal over for now, but it's anyone's guess where it will go.


Because of this early 'training' by his mother, there are a few issues we're still working through, and it's been a bit tense lately. This resulted in an arguement, resulting in my boyfriend calling his father to talk. I've never met his father, and the man knows little about me for the most part. I know plenty of him, however, and always thought it nice how my boyfriend considers him his hero, fair well worshipping the ground he walks on.


Oh, boy.


Because of this hero worship, and a resolution made when very young to never disappoint his parents, my boyfriend chickened out and didn't tell the whole story to his father, but painted things to make him look like a good mate, telling half-truths and wording things to put him in a good light, all so his father could give sympathy and praise him for being so good despite my being so 'bad.' He did say that a few times he pointed out he had fault in it too, but that his father would turn it right back around and put it on me, saying I made the relationship unhealthy and it was surely doomed. He had just about convinced him to leave me by the time their call ended.


The next day we got to talking again, but he wasn't acting his normal self -- before when we had problems and sat down to talk them out, we both approached it open and willing to compromise or change or whatever needed to be done. This time he employed a trick he had long ago told me his father had used with his mother. He turned my feelings around as if I had no right to feel the way I did about recent issues or the fact he seemed to be rather distant lately. When I called him on it and said I wished to speak to him and not his father, he apologized and was back to his normal self.


That was kind of worked out, though I felt no little bit of betrayal. He will be talking to his father again soon and said he will set the record straight, as it is wearing on him and he feels like an utter jackass for what he did. It doesn't make ME feel much better, but I will wait and see what happens with that conversation. He took time for self introspection and came to realize he doesn't really need his father's constant approval, and that he would look far better in the man's eyes if he did things for himself and not just because he might get approval from him. Who knows...


Well, now we're at today. Things have started to somewhat calm down, though I'm still a bit disgruntled about something of a more personal matter. I've been shrugging it off, but now I find I just have to shout out somewhere. While checking email I found that my boyfriend had recently subscribed to a particular sort of message board for people interested or aroused by a particular thing (nothing extreme or perverse or illegal, but strange anyway to me). For the record I have nothing wrong with sexual kinks, provided it's not illegal and remains consentual, but I can't begin to wrap my mind around this. We HAVE discussed it before, when he confessed it to me sometime back, and I was able to voice my concerns over it. He agreed it wasn't worth it and would take steps away from it. But now...? It potentially ties in with the personal issue that has me somewhat upset, and I don't know how to even begin approaching it.


I'd like to believe this will all work out, but it seems I have to snap less over the little things and he has to gain his own will and something in the way of a firmer spine. I'm not sure what to do at this point. I'll figure it out when it gets to it, I'm sure, but I really just needed to get this all out, and I sure as heck can't do that with any friends of ours. To me that seems like a betrayal, whereas typing to a message board full of strangers isn't. Strange? Probably. :)


Words of encouragement welcome. Someone? Anyone? I feel so alone in all of this.


Thanks for letting me take up the space,



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Blood is thicker than water.


Some people will always be more influenced by and loyal to their parents than they will to a partner. That's extremely unfortunate in almost every case and something you really need to iron out and resolve if you intend to continue this relationship.


You did not say what the nature of this message board was but I'm assuming it's something sexual. You need to take this seriously and not shrug it off. I personally feel homosexuality has many genetic components. I also feel a man who is heavily influenced by his father could be influenced sexually in some ways as well, even if only subconscious.


You may need to talk to a highly competent psychologist about your plight. But don't diminish the significance of what your boyfriend has gone through. A father who leaves his mother for other men is very serious...and very confusing for the offspring no matter at what age it happens.


Do not even consider taking your relationship to any higher level until you are completely satisfied that YOU will have much higher priority and influence in his life than his father in the event of marriage. You also need to be sure that whatever subject matter is discussed on the Internet message board he has joined is not the beginning of a lifetime of changes that may evolve with him and affect the relationship in any significant way.


I think you may need some professional help with this...and I KNOW he needs some counselling if he will seek it.

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I have been in a relationship which was haunted by things that happened in my ex's parents' marriage, its dissolution, and his subsequent relationships with each. I thought that he just needed a sane, normal person that he could rely on and a safe emotional space to sort out his issues, but I was in way over my head. There is no way you can sort this out for him, nor even help him. This burden is fully on his shoulders, because it must be. They're his parents. If you become involved it will be very easy for him to villify you, rather than confronting the problems he has with his parents.


Unless your boyfriend fully recognizes that his parents are a source of emotional dischord in his life, there is no hope that he can be in a happy, healthy relationship. Your relationship with him cannot exist independently of his relationships with his parents. Because that's just not realistic generally, and because, apparently, they won't allow it. So much easier to have an outsider to blame things on than to deal with their own shortcomings with their son. Until he resolves to directly address the issues he has with his parents (each of them), and to not stop until he has really has things straightened out in his own head (which does not mean converting his parents to his view, but rather his having the strength & confidence to know the truth, regardless of how they see things), he will keep repeating the unhappy cycles that right now you're caught up in.


It has nothing to do with you, how wonderful you are, or how much he values you. His relationship with his parents is toxic, and will poison other important things in his life. Take it from someone who has been there: there is no half-measure that will make things OK for someone who has deep-rooted issues concerning his parents.

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Thanks for the comments. It helped to get it all out and see what others think.


For now we've managed to work quite a bit out. Due to conflicts of schedule my boyfriend emailed his father, though he would have prefered seeing him face-to-face for it. He has yet to hear back, and I have to admit I'm a bit tense over it. Will his father believe him, or will he always think the relationship is bad? I can only wait and see.


He finally explained to me why he's been different and distant lately. It had to do with personal issues with himself, ones he didn't want to face. By asking him what was wrong and why he was so different, I forced him to think on it and thus the argument and tension that's been around lately. He has decided to face down and work through those issues, and he knows I'm here if he needs me.


Tony, the nature of the message board isn't in itself sexual, but some (many?) of those that visit it find it arousing. I just can't comprehend it, and that's where a root problem is. He wants me to understand, and I do, but I just can't accept it because it would endanger his health and reduce the quality of his life. He said he thinks he understands why I can't accept it, and agrees that it's not worth it. We didn't have time to fully resolve it, but hopefully tonight or tomorrow we will.


Also, he did go through counselling when his father left, and though he isn't against such he said it didn't seem to help much... until I said he probably didn't tell the counselor what he really felt out of loyalty to his parents. I hit the nail on the head. :p


His mother did something that surprised the both of us. She gave us a pasta cooker, "for your new house together." It almost seems like a peace offering, and I will accept it and hope it helps to smooth over past issues. She isn't a bad person, and I never once thought she was... she just has major problems of her own to work through, and I hope she finally will some day. Through all the mess she has maintained that my boyfriend and I are good for each other and that our relationship is a great one. It's just when she has the jealous-needy-dependant fits that it gets bad.


He is sure we will work through this, because as he said we are completely committed to each other. Well, we are, and I will do what I can to resolve these issues and see that our relationship continues on a healthy path. I still have my fears and worries, but I think they're normal and I'm darn well entitled to them. I am grateful that I can step back from my feelings and look at a situation with an unbiased view, but when I am alone and get to thinking on things sometimes I just need to get it all out, which is why I came to this board. Better to vent here than during a conversation where I need to remain level-headed about things.


Oh well... at least I know I'm not alone in having relationship woes this week. My sister called to inform me of her last date. It was an utter bust, for as they were driving along the guy said, "Yeah, I don't have a job right now so I'm living with my girlfriend and kid..."


It's good she found it funny in a bizarre way, because I surely needed the laugh. :)


Thanks again.



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