Hi, Carolyn: My boyfriend of 10 months has a “bestie” (word he uses) whom I have never met. They party together and coincidentally she can never meet up when I am out and I am never invited when she is hanging out. I believe he is keeping the space between us because they party together in ways I am concerned about, i.e. certain drugs and staying up all night. This makes me very uncomfortable, which I have expressed numerous times.
I asked to meet her to make it less mysterious, and it hasn’t happened. At first he gets defensive when I bring it up and then tells me he will rectify it. He tells me I am going to feel so much better once we meet because I’ll realize she is just a friend and she’ll tell me she has never seen him in love like this or as happy as he is now. My reaction is, well, if so, then why hasn’t he made it happen?
Which of course I know — because there is something wrong.
Also, I heard from a mutual friend he had a crush on her but she just wanted to stay friends.
There was one night she was going to meet up with us in July, without me asking, he proceeded to prep me and tell me they are just friends and I have nothing to worry about. He has told white lies to cover up when they are together and won’t reply to her texts when he is next to me and waits to reply when I can’t see it.
My gut tells me he has an issue with the drugs/relationship etc., and that’s why he is keeping the space. Either way, it’s not good.
We have talked about marriage and having kids, which I was very excited about. Obviously my actions are the ones I can count on. Don’t know what to do.
Frustrated: If you’re still with him, then, no, you can’t count on your actions, not yet.
This has been going on for months.
And you haven’t only stuck around, you’re talking marriage with him! Despite full awareness of his lying to you and strong suspicion of drug abuse.
The reasons are well past mattering. This is worth spelling out, though: It’s not about his having a onetime crush as a “bestie.” That’s complicating but not automatically disqualifying.
Instead, it’s about 10 months of his you’ve-got-to-be-kidding-me efforts to keep you from significant parts of his life. It’s about your having to ask for transparency. It’s about his refusing you even then.
What matters now, the only thing that matters, is that you’ve opted to stay with someone who treats you badly, waiting, waiting, waiting for the good things he plainly won’t give.
Please, learn to take better care of yourself. Your time, your companionship, your future, your trust, your truth are all gifts. Your self-respect is what keeps you from throwing those gifts away on people who don’t deserve them.
If it’s your pattern to devote yourself to people who mistreat you, then please work on your self-respect in counseling.
You’ll know you can trust yourself when you give these gifts judiciously — to people who value you enough and respect you enough to give as freely of themselves in return.
Write to Carolyn Hax at email@example.com. Get her column delivered to your inbox each morning at wapo.st/haxpost.