Dear Barb

Dear Barb:

I have been dating my boyfriend for two years. I am finding this relationship increasingly difficult. Part of me wants to end it, the other part of me wants it to work out. When we began dating Jay was sweet, charming, and attentive. After a few months he seemed to become controlling and possessive. He’s always asking me where I’m going and with whom. He doesn’t even want me to talk to my girlfriends anymore. I’m starting to feel smothered! It didn’t bother me too much initially, but now it is becoming a major problem between us. We argue almost daily. At times Jay makes accusations that are very hurtful and upsetting to me. I’ve tried to explain that I am not doing anything wrong. Occasionally he realizes how irrational he is and apologizes. Things improve for a while, but eventually it all starts again.

There are so many good things about Jay. He is a smart, loving, hardworking guy with a great personality. I am definitely in love with him. I guess I’m wondering what I can do to make Jay realize he can trust me. I just don’t know if this relationship is worth saving or would I be better off just ending it? Looking forward to your advice.


Hi Jen,

Thanks for your question. I sense your frustration with this relationship. You clearly care deeply for this man and want the relationship to work, but you are not happy with his distrust and accusations. I suspect Jay is not happy either. Does he realize how much his jealous, controlling behaviour is affecting your relationship? Explain how hurtful it is to you that he doesn’t trust you, and that you are seriously considering ending the relationship if he doesn’t do something about this conduct. This is not a healthy relationship for either of you. As his suspicions escalate, you may become angry and resentful and this will affect all areas of your relationship. If Jay wants to be with you he will have to try to find the root cause of his jealousy and learn ways to control it. I would suggest you seek counselling to help you both work through these issues. It is possible that you may be triggering something in each other that is causing this interaction. Jealousy is often the result of insecurities within a person. Therefore, Jay may have to go for individual counselling as well as couple’s counselling.

Obviously, you see many positives qualities about Jay. Therefore, I would not advise you to give up on this relationship. If you are both willing to go for counselling, there is a mutual commitment and desire to make this relationship work. In any relationship, half the battle is both parties committing to put forth the effort necessary to work through the issues. So, Jen, don’t give up yet, I believe there is still hope!

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