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I want my life back, I feel used by my married boyfriend

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By PHILIP KITOTO
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I need your advice on a decision I am about to make. I am in a relationship with a man who separated with his wife in 2016 but is yet to divorce her. The two have two children together. Early this year, I moved from the town I was staying in, moved to the town he lives in and got a job there. I have my own apartment and he has his, but most of the time I stay at his place. During the holidays, his children come over and I have to act as the house girl. I just feel used during these years we have been together, since it seems like the relationship is not going anywhere. He keeps on arguing with his wife, but I think he still loves or maybe cares about her because whatever she asks for he always provides. I feel like his family is his first priority while I am the last. I also feel like l have been giving more to the relationship than he is. I have even not been able to attend most family events during the holidays because I am the house girl, so I cannot leave. I wanted to ask him where the relationship is going because I cannot take it anymore. Maybe I need to run and never look back. I am 24 and I think I can start over.

I like your self-evaluation regarding the dilemma you face. It is amazing how we can see what is wrong in a relationship but fail or delay to take action to correct it.

Marriage is one of the most intimate relationships on earth. The connection between a couple may at times break severally but still, a couple may find reconnection even where there is evidence of abuse.

It may not be clear to you how close the relationship between this man and his wife is, but from what you write, these two, despite the fights and even the separation, still find moments of getting back together.

Deep within them is a desire for reconnection. As you make your decision, bear in mind that these two are not divorced and have children together.

In fact, the last statement you concluded with should be your focus. I believe you need to run, and make sure you run far away.

You are discerning, young and with a great future ahead of you.

Instead of setting yourself up for hurt and emotional injury in the future, take your advice and run, and please never look back.

It is obvious that this man is non-committal towards you and the future you would like. Rightfully so, you mentioned that his priority is his family.

I am of the opinion that if you challenged him and move on, it might push some sense into him to take responsibility instead of running away from the problems in his marriage.

Looking at the social structure in a home, I wonder how his children view you, since, as you point out, you feel like this man’s house help.

It is sad that you have been turned a prisoner to the extent that you are unable to regularly reconnect with your family.

Why should you feel this way in a relationship that is supposed to be governed by love?

There are many things that are just plain wrong with this relationship that will definitely wound you in the future if you don’t get out now.

PRIORITY
Who, exactly, are you to him and his children? I feel you are a stop-gap measure as he tries to figure out the problems besieging his marriage.

And you look after him and his children. For free. I really doubt whether you mean anything beyond this.

In addition, you are supposedly in a ‘relationship’ with a married man that is committed to his family even though he does not live with them.

Your diagnosis of him is correct. Many couples may separate and find someone to love out of frustration or desire to prove a point, but really, they are still committed to the love they once knew.

Your frustration is out of the realisation that though he is with you, he is committed elsewhere. You can tag along or follow your discernment and run.

You need to get your priorities right. As a single person, there are some things that should be a priority at this stage of your life, these include your family, your career and social life.

Right now, you are almost like a prisoner in a relationship that is not right for you. Obviously, this is not what you want.

****
My wife lied about her age, how can I trust her anymore?

I am married with two children. I recently realised that my wife lied to me about how old she is. When we were dating, she told me that she was born in 1989, only for me to find out that she was born in 1984. When I ask her why she lied to me, she said that she didn’t have any bad intention, that she lied out of love. Kindly advise me because my feelings for her have changed. I was born in 1988, so she is four years older than me. I look forward to your reply.

My wife often says that age is nothing but a number, however, to many, age is a troublesome number.

There are many men and women that, for varied reasons, feel the need to hide their age. Among these reasons is fear.

Worth noting is that some women especially take offence when asked how old they are.

In your case, if your wife revealed her real age, would that have made a difference in how you felt about her then? Would you even have believed her?

When you first were attracted to her and fell in love, was it after you knew her age? What factors attracted you to her?

I believe that your attraction was never based on age, rather, certain attributes that only you are aware of. Thereafter is when you desired to know her age.

The big question then must be, “Why do men or women hide or refuse to tell their age?”

I am of the opinion that the answer to this question if different for every individual.

While younger men may inflate their age for purposes of acceptance, the older ones reduce their age due to the same reasons.

I guess appearing younger for an older woman has everything to do with seeking acceptance.

Fear of being rejected because they are older can lead to low self-esteem, anxiety and even some level of depression.

For most people, acceptance and affirmation are key. The illusion they have is that hiding their age would stop their partner from thinking that they are too old for them, judging them on the basis of their age.

Being secretive about their age gives them the chance for acceptance, affirmation and love.

Your wife’s ability therefore to keep her real age from you was an opportunity to avoid disapproval from you.

From what you write, this secret has affected how you relate with your wife, but really, what has changed rather than the fact that she is four years older than you?

There are many like you who have allowed age difference to jeopardise their future with someone that would have made a great life partner.

TRUST
I see that you honesty value has been tested. If allowed, this lack of trust will lead to a widening gap between the two of you.

There are many others who have looked past the age issue and ended up with amazing marriages.

I advise that you work through your feelings of betrayal and try to understand your wife’s line of thought.

In addition, if your love relationship was initially based on character, not age, then this need not be a major issue.

You loved her before you knew her age, what has now changed? Try and interrogate your feelings and reactions.

If her lies were intentional and meant to take advantage of you, then this is wrong and needs addressing.

Choices people make will always have consequences, whose effects may at times hurt those who feel taken advantage of.

You need to figure a way of dealing with the mistrust you feel now if you value your marriage.





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