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Dear John,

     Even though my boyfriend and I were having problems for a while, I held on for longer than I should have. Then I got that dreaded call, the one that basically proved that my boyfriend was the jerk I’d long expected. He let me talk for half an hour and then blurted out that he had cheated on me with his ex! (Over the course of our relationship I had asked many times about her and he would just say, "Baby, it's over with her. You're the one." I had always been suspicious, and all my friends told me he was lying, but of course I didn’t listen to them.)

So, after he told me he cheated, he also revealed that they had been seeing each other the entire time of our relationship. I couldn't believe it. My heart was shattered and I felt like I'd never be the same. And in many ways, I'm not. But I have faith that I will indeed get over it soon. And I'm hoping you can say a few words to help me out.

Signed,
Blind Sided

Dear Blind Sided
     Here is a rule of thumb: If you suspect that your guy is cheating, most likely you are right. When he comes home smelling like a perfumery, chances are he wasn’t sampling fragrances for you at the mall. Unfortunately, we humans have an infinite capacity to believe what we want to believe, especially when it comes to love; which is why a girl who smells an unfamiliar fragrance on her boyfriend’s neck concludes that a tiny bottle will soon be coming her way.

Here is another rule of thumb: If your good friends--friends you trust and whose opinions you value--voice reservations about your guy, you ought to listen to them. Voicing concern is a no-win situation for a friend, but the good ones do it anyway because they care about you. If multiple friends all tell you the same thing, all the more reason to open your ears.

One last rule of thumb: If a guy you have loved and given yourself fully to is found to have cheated throughout your relationship, you are better off without him. Fortunately, in your case, your ex is such a total scumbag that washing your hands of him should prove pretty easy.

Look at it this way… while this experience has made you groan, you have also grown. And next time, with your newfound wisdom, you and your new beau will do more moaning than groaning.

Thanks for playing,
John



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