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I told him about my past, he went silent and now wont speak to me until he has 'forgiven me'!

Tagged as: Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (17 October 2011) 18 Answers - (Newest, 24 October 2011)
A female United Kingdom age 22-25, anonymous writes:

I need some help. When I was 12, i was quite badly raped and beaten to within an inch of my life (I was in ICU for the following 2/3 months afterwards.) I did not open up to anyway and I still remain that way (like, i will jump if anyone touches me, even slightly or I will get paranoid and freeze if I think anyone is behind me.)

Anyway, I have been dating this guy for the last 7/8 months (I'm 17 now, and he is 20) and our relationship has been fairly innocent until now until a week ago where he suggested taking it to "the next stage" and i completely froze. He asked why and I told him about my past and he just...sat there and said nothing. After a couple of minutes, he told me not to contact him until he knows if he can "forgive me" and has not talked to me since. What does me mean/Why did he say it?

Thank-you.

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A male reader, eek United Kingdom +, writes (24 October 2011):

eek agony aunti Hope now you manage to find a man now who will love you and appreciate you for who you are.

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A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (23 October 2011):

chigirl agony auntThe guy's an immature douche, I concur. "Damaged goods", speak for himself, he's clearly missed something while growing up. Good riddance! You can do way way better, and there are perfectly healthy men out there with a healthy look on things who will never refer to you as "damaged goods", as if you weren't a human but an object. You are not damaged goods.

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A female reader, person12345 United States + , writes (23 October 2011):

person12345 agony auntGood for you! What a misogynistic piece of crap this guy is.

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A female reader, angelDlite United Kingdom +, writes (23 October 2011):

angelDlite agony aunti am glad you have told him to 'stuff it' (or whatever words you used!) you are not SO damaged that you have to tolerate that sort of treatment from anyone. always remember that! he has got no empathy. you can do WAY better than him.

best wishes x

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A reader, anonymous, writes (23 October 2011):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Thankyou for your comments. He came back two days ago, said that he needed more time to think about "If he could be with someone who is 'damaged good'" so I told him where to stuff it, effectively.

Thank-you again :)

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A female reader, angelDlite United Kingdom +, writes (18 October 2011):

angelDlite agony aunt'forgive' you? sorry this is a deal breaker, to say that to you and walk out on you with no further contact is absolutely appalling! i hope if he does come back you tell him where to go!

after what you have been through you need someone who will love you and look after you. you must insist on NO LESS ok? don't let guys like him waste your time and emotional energy.

sounds to me like he is just looking for a carefree little f*** toy and now he realises that you are more 'complicated' than that he doesn't wanna know

x

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (18 October 2011):

he's a jerk - he's selfish if he thinks that either you're making all this up or he's completely unwilling to even give you the benefit of the doubt.

you shouldn't even try to "do anything" to keep him or get him back. You should move on from this jerk.

someone who really cared for you would be concerned for you and be sympathetic or at least TRY to be.

You didn't do anything wrong. Telling him the truth wasn't the wrong thing even though it brought about the end of this relationship. Instead it exposed a truth about his character which would have come up eventually anyway.

even if you knew that he would react this way, it was still the right thing to tell him about your past. if you have a fear of being touched (which is very understandable considering the trauma you experienced, you probably have PTSD) it will sooner or later surface in a romantic relationship. You can't avoid the topic forever.

that said, I think you also should get yourself into some therapy for yourself and your future relationships. No matter how sweet and understanding a future boyfriend may be, not being able to ever become intimate is unfortunately going to stop a lot of good guys from making a serious long term commitment to you (unless you can date a monk or someone who's OK with taking a vow of celibacy to be with you.) Relationships aside, your life will improve if you can heal from the startle responses you get from ordinary every day situations like someone being behind you or touching you even slightly. It's very normal that you now have these automatic responses and phobias given the horrific violence and trauma that was inflicted on you especially at such a young age, and you've proven that you're a very strong young woman and a survivor. still, I hope you're getting good professional help to heal from that trauma so you can live a normal life.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (18 October 2011):

His behaviour is diabolical. I'd echo everyone else's responses here - I cannot imagine how difficult it must have been for you to share something like that with him. You did absolutely nothing wrong. Unfortunately all it has done is show his rather muddy true colours.

Perhaps he wasn't prepared for what you would say but that in no way justifies his response.

There are caring, supportive guys out there. Don't waste your time with this one. You are worth much more than than that.

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A male reader, C. Grant Canada + , writes (17 October 2011):

C. Grant agony auntAbout the most positive thing I can say is that you have learned that he does not have the maturity to deal with your experience, and that it's better to have found that out now rather than when you have even more invested in the relationship. I'm appalled at his reaction, and want you to know that there are guys out there who can be supportive and caring, unlike this one.

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A female reader, KittieS United Kingdom +, writes (17 October 2011):

KittieS agony auntYour post fills me with sadness.

Please don't think for a second you need to be forgiven, because you don't - this was a horrible situation that was completely out of your control.

You were so very brave to tell your partner, I cannot even try to understand how difficult that must have been for you, I expect all you wanted was understanding and this man completely let you down.

I think you should move on from him, I know that will be hard because he is the first man you trusted, but there are kind, supportive men out there (like the previous poster) who wod act in the right way.

You deserve nothing but love and support, and I'm sorry but any man who says he needs to try and forgive you for something like this is not worth your time. If he said he needed time to think things through I'd be less harsh on him, but he has treated you very badly - I really believe it's time to move on.

I wish you nothing but happiness x

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A reader, anonymous, writes (17 October 2011):

This is your story, and it is a sad story, and a difficult story. You don't need to tell anyone until you are ready! You told him because you trust him, and he has completely betrayed your trust by acting that way!

You need to say this over and over "I haven't done anything wrong."

He is the one that is wrong!

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A female reader, person12345 United States + , writes (17 October 2011):

person12345 agony auntAny man who thinks a woman needs to be forgiven is someone you need to get rid of immediately. What you went through is horrible and the fact that he would react in any way except to comfort you and be patient with you shows that he is a self-centered jerk who isn't worth a second more of your time. He does not need to forgive you, he is the one who should be begging for forgiveness. This guy is a woman-hating prick.

I know you care about him, but do you really want to be with someone who believes you enjoyed what happened to you or asked for it to happen? You suffered enough when it happened, you don't need to be in a relationship with someone who believes you need to be punished even more.

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A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (17 October 2011):

chigirl agony auntYou did not do anything wrong by not saying this earlier. This was a private matter, not something you would want to publicly announce to everyone and no one. Telling him was a sign of confidence and trust in him, which he did not show that he deserved. He should have responded humbly, and felt glad that you trusted him enough to open up and share this. Instead he just threw that trust right out of the window. That to me is what is unforgivable.

You did not wait for too long to tell him. Things like this demand a certain amount of trust in a person to reveal, which requires that you wait until you know him well enough and feel secure enough. As far as I can see you should have waited even longer to tell him since he reacted this poorly. Perhaps then you'd have had enough time to see him for who he truly is and wouldn't have had to open up your heart only to have him walk out on you. But you did right in telling him since he wanted to take the relationship further. You showed trust and confidence in him. He proved that he didn't deserve this trust and confidence.

Maybe you can be happy that you discovered this about him early on, before you feel even harder for him.

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A male reader, eek United Kingdom +, writes (17 October 2011):

eek agony aunti have been in a reltionship to a woman who had a similar experience to you. I wondered why she would flinch when i tried to cuddle up to her. After dating about 4/5 months she told me what had happened to her which helped me understand. I was happy to just enjoy her company and spend time with her, we did not have a physical relationship until we had been going out for over a year, we stayed together for two years and are still friends.

The reason i told you that is i realize it must be hard to tell someone about that difficult time in your past. If he loved you he should have told you its not a problem and been there for you to support you. Acting the way he has is not right. Find a guy who will love you and give you the support you need.

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A female reader, RedAthena United States +, writes (17 October 2011):

RedAthena agony auntHe has no understanding or compassion for what you have been through. You have NOTHING to be forgiven for!

I so sorry that he could not be more mature. You were being honest and straightforward and he ran.

Better to know that now than later. This would make a very poor companion for you in the long term.

Do not contact him. The next thing out of his mouth should be an apology to you!

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A reader, anonymous, writes (17 October 2011):

This is verified as being by the original poster of the question

Thankyou for your comments so far. I have tried to call him, both on mobile and landline and he let them go to voice mail but got annoyed and stopped a few days ago. I did actually ask what he meant when he told me that, but he stayed silent, put on his shoes and walked out.

I wanted to say it sooner, but I did not have to courage too and was afraid to how he would react. If I knew he'd react this badly, I probably would not have said anything.

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A reader, anonymous, writes (17 October 2011):

I am so very sorry he reacted that way!

Sadly, this could mean two things.

The first thing is maybe he felt you should have disclosed this sooner. But this is a very deep topic and I can see why you waited. I don't think you waited too long, personally. Better to know the person more than the first few dates. I think it is an over reaction if that is the case.

The second possibility is worse. Unfortunately, there are men who honestly believe that women "ask for it," and that when they get raped they deserve it. They think that the women actually "enjoy" being raped or something. I've been told before by a guy that if I was ever raped it was equal to cheating, and that he would not forgive me for it.

I'm so sorry that you have to deal with this after your horrible experience. I say that you don't contact him, do as he asks. This is a "hope for the best, but prepair for the worst" type of situation.

Also, you should take this time to consider how you feel about his reaction. I personally would not feel okay with being told I needed to be "forgiven." What happened to you was horrible, traumatic, and not at all your fault! You need a partner who will be understanding, loving, and supportive.

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A female reader, chigirl Norway + , writes (17 October 2011):

chigirl agony auntI think you are the one who should not forgive him. I have no idea what it is he is talking about, as there is nothing you did that he needs to forgive you for. I think that maybe your boyfriend isn't the kind of man you thought. It is a horrible way to react really. Did you not ask him what he meant? Can you not give him a call and say you want to know what he meant by that, and that you will give him his space once he tells you what he meant?

During this time apart I think you should seriously consider this relationship. He sounds... quite weird if you ask me, and not like someone I'd feel comfortable telling intimate details and secrets to, if this is the way he reacts. Where's the support, where's the comfort, where's the love and understanding? Where are all those things that should be there in a good and healthy relationship? If he can hear such a tale from you and then take off saying not to contact him until he's figured out if he can forgive you, then he can not have cared much for you, if anything at all.

I do wonder if he wasn't just trying to have sex with you from the start, and has been playing the part of a good boyfriend up until he could get you into his bed. This is a red flag. Be careful. I think, in my personal opinion, that you should end the relationship with him. A good, loving boyfriend would have been there by your side to support you, not leave and tell you not to contact him...

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