Dear Aunty Anne,
My boyfriend of four years left me when I put the pressure on him for us to get married after such a long courtship.
He told me he was more concerned about his career than marriage and didn’t want any children for now.
You can then imagine how shocked I was when I found out that eight months after we split, he not only has a new woman he’s engaged to, his fiance is also pregnant!
I feel like such a fool and I doubt if I’ll ever trust any man again. My self-confidence is certainly at an all time low.
Why did he lie to me? It would have been much kinder to just tell me he wasn’t in love with me and didn’t see a future for us.
Bimbo, by e-mail.
You might think it would be kinder for him to be honest with you about his feelings, but he may have thought differently.
A lot of people find it much easier to say they’re not ready for marriage or too young for kids, than look someone who loves them in the eyes and say “I don’t love you back.” He might even have meant it at the time.
I don’t think he lied to you. There’ve been a lot of commitment- folks who’ve left a number of potentially good relationships because they don’t ever want to be tied down, only to find their commitment phobia vanished when they meet the right person at the right time.
It must obviously hurt that it wasn’t you who had the power to make him want to marry and to have kids.
But that’s life and things like this happen. When you start dating again, make it clear to prospective partners that while you don’t want to rush things, you would like marriage and kids one day.
This will sort the men from the boys at the early stage. Then keep telling yourself that just because one man did this to you, it doesn’t mean all men will.