I had a boyfriend once who accused me of cheating any time I wasn’t with him. I closed myself off from anything that might cause him concern. I loved him, you see, and wanted everything to be perfect between us.
He, on the other hand, had lots of “friendships”. He spent hours on the phone talking to women, inviting them to play tennis, go for drinks, help them move, or to repair things at their apartments. And yes, we were, at his request, supposed to be monogamous. His behavior fell into an exempt category, according to him, and he was adamant that he wasn’t going to stop because it was “friendship,” and after all, “helping” is what friends are for.
I found myself in a therapist’s office, confused and not knowing what to do. (I know what I’d do now, but I didn’t then.) I wanted so much to make our relationship work; it was so wonderful when it first started. As time went by though, his penchant for openly pursuing other women under the guise of friendship while accusing me of cheating was taking it’s tole. I couldn’t figure out why he kept accusing me of cheating when I wasn’t.
At the therapist’s office, I began to see that I’d have a lot to accept, if I were to continue the relationship. Mostly though, I couldn’t fathom his obsession with my supposed cheating. I’m sure, Dear Readers, that you know exactly why he kept accusing me of cheating, but it bares saying anyway: he was, in fact, a cheater. People often accuse others of what they, themselves, are considering or are actually doing.
We can encounter this type of dynamic not just in romantic relationships, but at work, in our friend groups and in families. Everyone wants love, admiration, success, prosperity, the juicy goodness of life, and we should be free to pursue it. However, some want their cake and to eat it too. They make all sorts of accusations to keep others in stasis so they can keep doing what works for them.
Naturally, this boyfriend and I broke up. I came away with a few scars and a treasure trove of lessons in human nature. I also came away having vanquished a few fears. You see, I stayed in the relationship because I feared loneliness and the possibility that I wasn’t lovable. I couldn’t see that, from a statistical perspective, there are millions of men on the planet, and a percentage of those men would be perfect for me. Fear has a way of narrowing our options, limiting our decisions, and tricks us into believing in lack, and not going full on toward our dreams, especially when we feel like someone has their thumb on us.
When I found the courage to walk away, doors unexpectedly opened. I grew in all sectors of my life. I stepped out of my shell and worked toward making my dreams come true, which I would not have been able to pursue if I had stayed and accepted that limiting and untenable situation.
We are meant to shine; to pursue our dreams with passion and make them come true. To do so, we must surround ourselves with people who are healthy, supportive and who recognize that abundance, prosperity and all of life’s goodness is readily available to all who choose to pursue it.