From my past experiences with men, the true reason why we failed was because we were shit at communicating. Whenever I was disappointed, I did not admit that I was upset. Wheenver they had doubts or questions, they never raised them to me. Instead, they chose not to pursue it, until it would eventually consume them and our relationship.
Things were going all fine and dandy with the boyfriend until I started being curious and started snooping around his Facebook profile like a prepubescent teenager. Then, I spotted two pictures tagged of him right before the period we started to date but he had already started courting me then. By a girl. It was clearly just the two of them.
He said they never dated.
I didn’t not trust him at the point where I found out, but doubts definitely surfaced. Was he telling a white lie or was this photo uploaded late? Was there a better explanation to the appearance of these two photos that I’ve never previously seen before? Didn’t he tell me – didn’t he reassure me – that he was not interested in this girl? (We bumped into her once while out on a date and they said hi.)
Initially, I just talked it away in my head. No big deal. He’s with me now, right? Isn’t that what matters? And what if we get into a huge argument all over nothing and ruin our relationship? What if I got really upset over this? Also, as I’m raised in a more collective culture, harmony in groups is something that I’ve inherited. It’s evolutionary. It’s in my blood.
But tonight, I couldn’t take it any longer. Maybe it’s because I have a bit more time on my hands. Or maybe it’s because I know we’re serious about each other and if we eventually progress on to the next step, I don’t want to have any nagging doubts at the back of my head. I want to be sure and ask him now before the topic becomes too late or too irrelevant.
Becoming the obsessed freak I am, I started googling first. “I found photos of boyfriend taken by a girl before we started dating” was too complicated for Google to throw up any relevant results. Then, I tried, “I’m bothered by my boyfriend’s ex-girlfriend”, even though she wasn’t an ex. Google interpreted “Photos of boyfriend by another girl” as “my boyfriend sent naked pictures of himself to another girl” and “my boyfriend asked for pictures of other girls”. As I continued searching for answers from the Internet, I was thanking God that I don’t have the problems these people did. And I realised how ridiculous my worry was. Who worries about photos from the past anyway? It’s not like they were doing anything. It was just photos of him out in town in broad daylight. That’s all.
If you are a woman, or you know anything about women, you’d know that I didn’t drop the subject. I even googled “how to confront my boyfriend” to set up a reasonable line of attack. Once I’ve thought of all the possible scenarios of his answers, I shot him an email and asked him to come online as quickly as he could.
It was still daylight at his side of the world when he came online, pleased to see me earlier than we previously arranged. He had no idea what was in it for him.
“Have you ever lied to anyone?” was my question after asking him how his day was.
He knew something was up, but still answered my question. “You can trust me” came after that. I know. Then, I asked him if he had dated anyone or if he was interested in anyone a month or two before we started dating. His answer was no, but the only time he went out with a girl was the same one who uploaded the photos on Facebook. But he didn’t think that was a date, because they were neighbours and anyway she kept asking him out and she was new to the city and he said they didn’t do anything.
I was relieved. The whole nagging situation and whether-my-boyfriend-dared-see-another-girl-right-before-asking-me-out vanished. A huge stone was off my back. So I reassured him that I trust him and that was what I thought, but I was curious and just had to hear his explanation.
“Explanation!” he laughed, and I realised then that that made him sound like he did something wrong, which obviously he did not. He confessed in a few seconds that he felt like he was being interrogated right when our conversation started. I retorted, saying that that’s how you conduct meetings – you always discuss the most important issue first! There’s no being wishy-washy with me and in our relationship, this is how I’ve chosen to communicate. No more avoiding, no more lies, just pure honesty.
Moral of the story? Facebook drama is unnecessary. We’re all better off without it. Also, when I have doubts with my boyfriend next time, I know he’d be okay with me raising them 🙂