Am I overreacting to my boyfriend's post on Facebook to another girl?

by Marija
(New Jersey)

Question: I've been dating my boyfriend for 7 months now and we are basically perfect for each other in any sense of that word. We had few minor fights but nothing huge. We really love each other and it seems like we loved each other from the first moment we met.


Anyhow, I checked the pictures of this one girl he met on Facebook and said that they're fond of each other, basically just talking and being friends. I didn't investigate because I didn't think it was necessary. She would even post cute videos for both of us.

However, few days ago as I was looking some of her pictures I found couple of his comments that left me speechless. One of her pictures was named something like "is there anyone better out there?" She was with bunch of her friends and no one else commented picture but him. He wrote: "No, there is no one more beautiful or better than you". On another one he commented her picture (she was taking it with some other friend and they had flowers in their hands). He wrote: "flowers for flower :)))))))" I saw a date when he posted the comment and it was sometime in February, which is the time he really acted like a man who loves me so much and who thought of me as the perfect girl. I was out of it when I read those. I couldn't believe it. He's currently away and will be for another month so I don't know how to confront him about this and what exactly should I say? I know it may sound like I'm overreacting but I'm not.

Please advise. I'm looking forward to your suggestion. I thank you in advance.

Answer from Coach Theresa: Hi there. Thanks for taking the time to send me a question. Here is my take on the situation and some healthy relationship tips:

First of all, you can’t read your boyfriend’s mind so you have no idea what he was thinking when he wrote those comments on FB to that girl. Plus, that was 5 months ago and you were only dating for 2 months at the time. Maybe he felt sorry for her that no one had commented on her post. Maybe he was trying to make her feel better or boost her ego since she seemed lonely. Maybe he thought those flowers were pretty and wanted to find a way to compliment her in a friendly way.

So… unless you ask him straight out what he meant, you are speculating and overreacting, a combo that will make you look for the worst in a person instead of giving them the benefit of the doubt. Worse, if you feel worried that something is going on and you continue to focus on that, you are likely to attract more of that to the point where you may actually manifest him cheating on you because you have been focusing on the very thing you were worried about!

It only takes thinking a thought, good or bad, for 17 seconds to draw more thoughts like it to you. If you keep holding that thought for 68 seconds, you will start to manifest it into your reality.

You also mentioned that he is away and will be gone for another month. Are you in contact with him? Did you make any agreements about whether the two of you will be monogamous while apart? It is never safe to make assumptions; communication is always key.

So, here are my suggestions for you:

1. Stop worrying about the FB stuff. It might have been innocent. Give him the benefit of the doubt. Don’t look for trouble that isn’t there!!! If somehow you find out he is indeed flirting with other women, then when he is available, you will have to have a polite conversation about what you expect when you are monogamous with someone, i.e. no flirting online, no chatting online with people you don’t know, no web-camming with other women, etc., whatever your comfort zone is and get his thoughts on this.

2. Make a list of your boyfriend’s positive aspects. This is everything you love about him and sweet things he’s done for you and how it makes you feel. For example: 1. He always gives me a big hug and a kiss when he comes in the door. 2. He tells me he loves me and he makes me feel loved. 3. On our first date he held my hand and told me I was beautiful. 4. He is snuggly and I feel secure when he wraps his arms around me. Get the idea? Make as long a list as you possibly can and keep adding to it and re-reading it daily. Not only will this make you feel better, but you will be thinking positively about him for 68+ seconds so those good things about him will show up in your experience.

3. If you find you are still having a hard time trusting him or have a lot of fear, I suggest learning EFT, Emotional Freedom Techniques. There are tons of videos on it on youtube and at some point I will make some videos myself in response to questions like yours. It is super easy to learn and it can help release fear in a matter of minutes.

4. Finally, try to be easy about this. Men want to know that you trust them, respect them and admire them. If you have a history of men cheating on you, then I would do some work on that with EFT and a qualified practitioner. Trust that the Universe has your back and you can relax and let it do it’s job, which is to make everything go smoothly for you.

I hope that helps.
Take care and happy dating!
Coach Theresa

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My dad doesn't approve of our relationship

by Marija

Hi Theresa,

Thank you for taking the time to respond and in such detail. I really appreciate it. And yes, it absolutely helped me.

I'm so glad I waited for your response before I took any action. I'm familiar with the Law of Attraction and EFT, and because of that trying to stay away from negative thoughts was my main goal. It was hard. I had urges to call him up and just say all those negative things that were building up inside of me. As you said, 17 seconds of focused thought build more thoughts alike and if we continue we can expect to manifest those outcomes in reality. That I didn't want to happen. I agree that the best way to stay clear of those is to remember all those good times and all the positive things he did or said. There are plenty. For a few days there I was mostly thinking about this one possibly negative thing and forgot about all the positive ones.

Yes, I'm in contact with him. We talk on the phone almost every day, and even if we don't talk we text or email each other. We agreed to be monogamous while apart. That was never in question, and both of us accepted it with no problem. We are planning on moving in together when he gets back and he wants us to get married (I want that too so very much). So you can safely say that we are very open with one another and we share this great connection (the one I never felt before with another human being). I know that it doesn't make sense then that I would even contemplate that he would hurt me or cheat on me. He doesn't flirt with other women and deeply respects me in every way. Those messages I guess hurt my ego, and I felt as though he betrayed me in a way. I can also see why would I go that far as to think something like that. I allowed some negative thoughts of another to get the better of me.

To be more specific, my dad is against our relationship. He refused to meet my boyfriend because he simply knows that there is no point. My dad already knows that since he's younger than me that he'll disappoint me (he's few years younger than me). He said that he'll get up one day and leave and that we don't have the future. I know that he's wrong. I'm not infatuated or blinded by love. I'm pretty aware who I allowed to enter my life and he showed that he's more mature than most people I know my age or even older. I never once let anyone else interfere with our relationship, but then he left and those thoughts found their way to me. I started entertaining those negative thoughts of him possibly being someone who my dad was saying he really is (although there is no way for him to know any of that given that he's not a physic and that he doesn't know him). I know I shouldn't have done that but somehow I did. I did that even despite the fact that during one of our conversations my boyfriend said that he'll delete Facebook account because he doesn't want anything meaningless to occupy his attention, especially when he gets back. You can say that I'm very happy to have found him, but I'm also worried and not so happy about the fact that I don't know what is going to happen when they finally get to meet each other, for they will have to soon. I am doing this-moving in with him and there is no question about it. It breaks my heart to think that that could possibly affect my relationship with my dad. He became very paranoid person throughout the years of deceit and backstabbing actions of others. But I want him to see that this man that I love is not like that. I even know that my boyfriend would be there for him and help him out any way he can. I try to imagine that end result of them getting along and supporting each other within limits of course, but sometimes knowing where my dad stands it's very hard. Sometimes it seems like a science fiction to imagine something like that. What would you suggest?

I would like to thank you again for taking the time to respond. Of course you have my permission to post my question in Q & A section on your website :)

All the best.

Sincerely,
Marija

Answer from Coach Theresa: Hi Marija,

I'm glad my message helped you and I'm glad to hear that you waited before taking any negative action.

Your boyfriend sounds like a wonderful man. You didn't tell me your ages, but honestly, age never matters unless you are in a totally different generation from each other, say, more than 10 years apart and as you get older, age matters less and less. There is a big difference between a 20 and 27 yr old, but not much between a 35 and 43 yr old.

Next, even though you didn't ask for my advice on this... I wouldn't move in with your boyfriend unless you are engaged already and set a date. Why? Because for most (but not all) men, once they are living with you, think 'why bother getting married since you already practically ARE married', AND with living together there is always the option of backing out, whereas once you get married and move in together, it's more permanent. Countless women have spent years living with someone waiting for them to propose and the man says that he will when he's ready because of x, y, z (more money, better job, etc.) and it drags on for a long time or never happens. I'm not saying that your bf is one of these men, but you don't want a roommate; ultimately, you want a husband, right?

Also, you haven't been together very long, only like 7 or 8 months and apart for 1-2 of those. Again, I don't know how old you are, but what's the rush? If you've never lived on your own and you live with your parents, you are much better off learning how to be on your own before you live with someone else. You really need to take the time to get to know your bf through all the seasons. I often suggest a "3 year lease with option to buy". 3 years is the average "honeymoon" period for most couples. If you make it beyond the 3 year honeymoon and haven't broken up and gotten back together several times, you've learned how to resolve conflict and this person is your best friend, then you are much more likely to have a relationship that lasts a lifetime. Before you take the next step, read Barbara D'Angelis book "Are you the one for me?" and do the exercises in it. It's enlightening! Plus, you can get it used on Amazon or any used bookstore for like $1.

Now, for your dad. First of all, you are never going to change him so just let go of the idea that ANYTHING may ever be different in the way he acts and thinks. Seriously, he may NEVER approve of your bf even when he becomes your husband so YOUR job is to find ways to remain happy despite that fact. Why does he have so much influence on how you think? You have your own guidance system and if you feel bad, it's because your inner being does not agree with what you are giving your attention to (in this case, the fact that your dad doesn't approve).

Given who your dad is, he is trying to look out for you so that you don't get hurt and he thinks he is actually helping you in some way by discouraging you from your bf; but also given who he is, he doesn't understand that you are able to make the best choices because it is YOUR life. Who cares if he doesn't want to meet your bf? That's HIS loss. It's not easy to stop caring about what other people think, especially when it's a parent, but it will free you in many ways to try. Him refusing to meet your bf should be as insignificant to you as him telling you he refuses to eat pistachio ice cream. Who cares if he hates pistachio ice cream?

If you look to approval from your dad (or anyone else for that matter), you will have to twist yourself into a pretzel because everyone will want something different from you! I know you don't want to jeopardize your relationship with your dad, but what relationship? It sounds like he is giving you very conditional love and if you don't do what he wants, he pouts about it or tries to make you feel guilty. That's not a good relationship and it sets you up to be a people-pleaser and do what he wants, only to get fed up with it and then persecute him out of frustration.

This is a great thing to do some EFT on. Try tapping on "Why do I care what other people, especially my Dad, think? What will happen if I don't get their approval? Will the world end?" See if you can find some peace about this. There is also a program called Natural Confidence by the Lefkoe method which is excellent for helping remove limiting beliefs, like "What other people think of me is important". Here is a link to the Natural Confidence Program to eliminate a belief for free (link opens in new window)

Next, the same positive principles apply here: Write a list either on the computer or a notebook of all the positive aspects that your dad has and try to review them often. If you ONLY focus on his positive aspects, when he is in a negative, paranoid mood, he won't be around you; you will only be a match to him when he is more positive. Only when you are focusing on the positive, can the situation possibly change. In fact, it is not science fiction to focus daily on both your boyfriend's and your dad's positive aspects and find that they end up getting along one day! But it is up to you to focus on the positive.

Hope that helps!

Take care,
Coach Theresa

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Should I be concerned about our age difference?

by Marija

Hi Theresa,

You're absolutely right. He is a wonderful man and what I also see in him is great potential, determination. He absolutely makes me come alive. Since I moved here I was very depressed due to all the losses I had to suffer (friends, life,...) and I was pretty much living alone for the past year. I was able to deal with all the issues of loss and feeling lost, confused. I actually distanced myself from everyone and everything for about a month before I met with him. I need to be alone and sort things out, decide on what I want, going back to my old desires, created some new ones. When I met him I was back on the scene, meeting up with friends and meeting some new ones. I had no intention of finding someone at that time. Before that I always felt the need to find someone who will help me complete the void I felt and I knew that was so wrong.

I met my boyfriend a long time ago but he was just an acquaintance of mine and since he is 6 years younger than me I never even gave it a thought of being with him. He invited me for coffee and for me that was just that: coffee time with another person. We ended up talking all night and I was amazed. I know it may sound funny but we fall for each other hard that night :) and it's been like that ever since. You can say that we practically lived together for all this time and I not only liked it I loved it. We are getting engaged when he gets back so I don't have to worry about this dragging on and lead to nothing or just us being roommates.

The only thing that concerns me is you mentioning that it is different when someone is 20 and another person is 27, because I'm 28 and he's 22. However, if you take into account that he had it pretty rough and that he demonstrates maturity beyond my expectation of someone who's 28 not to mention 22 then it's not that big of a deal. I know that some people say that it doesn't matter because he's still very young and he has plenty of room to change his mind, but I can just say one thing. I go back to a time when I was his age and I was so sure of what I wanted in a man and relationship. Nothing changed about that. And I got all I was hoping for. If I met him back then I would still want all that I want now. I had to chance to explore things, see other parts of the world, even lived in different parts of the world and that didn't change what I want from relationship. He on the other hand, had the chance to live life before me, made good and bad choices, was dating, and he's just as sick of trivial things in life and wants something meaningful. He lost his father when he was 14 and that made his life a lot different than it would have been if his father was still alive. That could also be the reason he wants to have kids very much. We talked about it so many times. We both want that to happen at some point. Now, we're not foolish to get ourselves into it unprepared. This is the first time I felt I want to have a baby and particularly with this man. I don't want to have baby because it's the "time". I never thought of it that way. He feels the same way. The point is we do make a great team, and when I'm with him I feel so inspired to act, do something more and also enjoy life :) If you could see our day spent together it would perfectly clear that it's productive and I can't wait to spend each day like that without interruptions on the side. I know we'll be unstoppable :)

As far as my dad is concerned he's opinion shouldn't concern me. I made up my mind and I hope he'll come around at some point. I'll do what you suggested in regards to him.

Thank you again on all your great advices. I truly appreciate it. God bless you :)

Warm regards,
Marija

Answer from Coach Theresa: Hi Marija,

It sounds like you guys are made for each other! I wouldn't worry about the age thing at all. Six years is not a big enough difference to be an issue. If he is a mature 22 yr old, then that is all that matters. Also, I have totally fallen for someone in one night so I know it's possible.

Trust your own inner guidance. If it says, "Go for it!", then you should GO FOR IT! To keep yourselves happy and passionate together for a lifetime, just keep adding to your boyfriend's list of positive aspects and re-reading them, even 5, 10, 25 years from now! It can only make it better!

I wish you all the best!

Take care,
Coach Theresa

Hi Theresa,

My inner guidance says it loud and clear that I should go for it :) and I will go for it. The inner guidance was always there but I managed to ignore it so many times. It's funny but six years ago I was with a guy who was six years older than me (the same situation as now except I'm the one 6 years older). I also fell for him fast, everything was going great (or so I thought). We even got engaged. But something in my gut was telling me something's wrong and there was always something missing. I couldn't pinpoint it but it was there. I ignored it big time and decided that it won't stop me from enjoying myself. He turned out to be a bad guy; he lied, cheated.... and married someone else in about two months after we broke up. It took me years to recover, but I got over it. Now I'm with a person who's all I was hoping for and I'll take on your advice and I'll start with the list of positive aspects on him (and keep adding) :)

What can I say except that I'm grateful for your support and that I really appreciate it. I wish you all the best too. I'm beginning to understand why they say that when something negative happens there is always something good that comes out of it. Although nothing bad actually happened I perceived it as such and got in touch with such wonderful person such as yourself :) I'm glad I did.

Warm regards,
Marija

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