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Whirlwind romance with my Portuguese boyfriend but he's going to ruin it!

Tagged as: Troubled relationships, Trust issues<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (9 September 2013) 9 Answers - (Newest, 10 September 2013)
A female United Kingdom age 30-35, anonymous writes:

I'm worried my boyfriends jealousy and moody behaviour around other people will destroy our relationship, which aside from this issue is the best I've ever had and I would be devastated if it all goes tits up. Sorry if this is sleep-inducingly long, but I wanted to get in the info.

I got into a kind of whirlwind romance with my boyfriend that got very intense very fast. We have only been together 3 months and I am crazy about him. We see each other a lot and as long as its just me and him we get on great and are really happy together, but as soon as we have to part ways or other people are around he gets moody and he will start 'text message' dramas or sit and sulk not talking to anyone.

I am just worried if the cracks are appearing already, the relationship will not have much long term chance and I really want to spend my life with this guy, which is not something usual for me.

I am English and he is from Portugal. I don't speak any Portuguese he speaks English pretty well but I think sometimes we have misunderstandings because of the language. I am not perfect I sometimes I can be argumentative. But he asks way too many questions about my exs and past and then obsesses over what I tell him. I am honest and tell him the truth but he didn't like finding out I had been with more people than him, Saying it makes him sick to think of me with other men etc

He is older than me and his relationships have been with less people but a lot longer than mine, I think he questions my feelings because of this. He always says 'I want to live with you, kids etc, but I think you will get bored of me and dump me' I hate it when he says these things and try to reassure him, but I think its unfair to judge me on my past, why does It matter?

He dislikes me having facebook and says its full of men, also he looked through my stuff in my bedroom and found a picture of me and my ex (so old and dusty where it had been buried in shit and I forgot to throw it out). I was angry he looked through my things but he never apologised and just kept going on about 'why have you kept the picture?' In the end I threw it in the bin, but still 'the dreaded picture' will get a mention periodically.

I recently went on holiday with my best friend (who is male) and his partner. My best friend is gay and we booked the holiday before I met my boyfriend. But he still made a fuss that it was some kind of sex holiday and why did I want to be away from him? He looked at the clothes I packed and moaned that it was too revealing and while I was away he stalked my facebook and sent me texts asking 'who the fuck is x?' (Male names that he must of intensely stalked to get hold of). He justified his behaviour by saying I act suspicious on the computer deleting my history etc so he needed to check it out.

He says no one has ever cheated on him, so I can't understand why he has this paranoia? Are Portuguese men a bit jealous or possessive with their women? is this a cultural thing?

I have never cheated on anyone and am very loyal. I hope in time he will trust me more and stop all this jealous behaviour, thinking I will get with every man I know. He is the only man I have been with who I can spend days and days with just me and him and be happy. Just when we are apart or other men are around these dramas happen.

He says he has told me everything about himself and shared his secrets so quickly, and that's something he's never done before. So now he is afraid it will all go wrong and bite him in the ass. I think he will screw it up by acting this way. How can I resolve this? :(

thanks for reading

View related questions: best friend, facebook, jealous, my ex, on holiday, period, stalking, text

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 September 2013):


Thanks 4 the note, true she did mention he is older than her, although we don't know how much older. Like you said, sometimes age is not a predictor of maturity ;)

Thanks again.

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A female reader, Denise32 United States +, writes (10 September 2013):

Denise32 agony auntMiss P: You missed something in the OP's message: she said he is older than her - so presumably a more mature man who really ought to know better than to be exhibiting the kind of jealous, nosy, dictatorial behavior she describes!

Unfortunately, I suppose as we grow older we don't always grow wiser or more mature.

I have to say I suppose three months may sometimes be long enough to know if you can form a long-lasting happy relationship with someone - but the danger is you can be so blinded by infatuation that you either gloss over their less-than-desirable qualities, OR think you can change "him" for the better. Well, guess what? He won't change unless he wishes to!

No, much as she may love this man, there are huge red flags in his attitudes and behavior! Either he can attempt to change for the better, or she can, sadly, give it up as unworkable, and eventually meet someone far more compatible.

I'm glad you are in a good relationship yourself.

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (10 September 2013):

Simple...he doesn't want somebody who was casual about there sexuality. You don't want to be judged on your past??? What else can you be judged on? The present is fleeting and the future is not certain.

Your reckoning is at hand. Your promiscuity is exacting its price. I hope it was worth it.

I am not defending his action. If you want this to work the you and he must work together to find out what you can (or must) do to endure.

Nobody, but you and he knows what that is.

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 September 2013):

Three months IS long enough to determine someone's character and whether you get along or not. In fact, at 3 months I was already living with my guy and 3 years later we are as happy as can be and ready to get married!

When you have a passionate, intense start, it will either remain a part of your relationship, especially when it's part of your DNA, or if other factors come into play, it will fizzle it.

Your guy and the relationship has some redeeming qualities, as you did state it's the best you've ever had, aside for his jealousy and moody behaviour.

Just because a person is jealous does not mean you must run away! They have other redeeming qualities and can be helped. It will take love, patience, commitment and time but it can be done.

You see each other a lot, so even though it's only been 3 months it's been enough for you to realise there are some problems.

If he is in the same age range as you (22-25) then he has a LOT of learning to do. He just needs personal growth and development to mature as a man in a secure relationship. He may or may not have a good example at home, and depending how his dating history looks, a lot of it could be contributing factors.

He needs to learn what is loyalty and trust - that whether you are together or not, you will remain true to him. This will come with time.

He needs to learn not to be childish, when he sits and sulks not talking to anyone when at a function and not knowing how to react or deal with his emotions. All of the things you shared reflect a guy who does not know how to deal with his emotions and feelings, so it comes out in the worst way. It doesn't make him a bad person, just someone who needs understanding and help! He probably has a very good heart, loves deeply and intensely, but can't deal with the "soft stuff". This comes from being in a "safe" relationship with someone who will treat him right - that he can trust, who keeps his secrets, who allows him to be himself and mature.

As you said, you really want to spend your life with this guy - it's just the emotions that need to be reigned in. You can take each incident and use it as a learning curve, a lesson learnt. Discuss and talk about everything. How you feel, what you think, and how his behaviour makes you feel. He needs to understand and know that, so that he can adapt and begin to change his patterns. It will also bring you closer together.

Despite you being English and him being Portuguese, even people who speak the same language and were born in the same country, have misunderstandings ;-) It again boils down to open honest communication about everything. Having patience with each other, and allowing each other to grow, to make mistakes and to learn from them.

If he is the keen type to discover himself, to learn, then share with him how articles on self esteem, confidence, trust, faithfulness, will help him grow. Also, articles on jealousy and specifically on retroactive jealousy. It can be helped, if you have the patience and he is willing to try and change, for you and the future of the relationship!

His comment that he thinks you might get bored of him and dump him point to insecurity and fear of rejection/alienation. He needs growth in this area as well.

Don't get me wrong, he may be a great all round guy who has it all together, is confident in his work and his life, but in terms of relationships, he has not matured accordingly. It just needs work. Trust me, you can be in longer term relationships and not grow at all (happened to me) in fact, they left me worse off, insecure and jealous. OR, you can meet the right one, who helps you believe in yourself again, builds your confidence by accepting you as you are, and you blossom in this relationship to the point where insecurity and jealousy become healthy. It won't go away totally, but with love with the right person, you can get through anything and be at peace. He needs that - hopefully he will get it with you.

He feels very threaneted and scared of losing you - hence the Facebook comments. He needs to know that yes, there are men EVERYWHERE. At work, at the Mall, at the car wash, at the library, at the convenience store, in social networking sites - lots and lots of men, BUT, you have chosen HIM. So no matter what other men are out there, you want him and he needs to get that. He will in time...

Going through your stuff? Was there a reason? If no valid reason like learning your interests to surprise you, if it was purely a fact finding mission about your past, then you need to set boundaries and be very firm about them. What is acceptable and what isn't, so that he never crosses that line again.

Never allow him to bring up the old picture again. You didn't do anything wrong, it's your past and you earned it. Keep the boundary in place and he will know he can't cross it.

Once again, the immaturity is shining through at his not being able to handle or cope with you going away without him, with other male (gay or not) friends. He needs to learn he can trust you - so keep being yourself, assuring him of your loyalty, and in time, he will see your words and actions go together.

Portuguese men or women are no more jealous and possessive than other cultures, it's more each individual's story and what brought them to that place. I'm a Portuguese woman, and until I began dating I never knew the word jealous. This was a blessing :) I grew up happy without envying anyone or anything. I was also never threatened or insecure about anything. Then I began dating, and my first long term relationship brought about the green eyed monster. Sadly, the guy was not who I thought he was, now with experience, maturity and hindsight I can see him for the conman he was, but at the time I thought he was IT. By the time I broke up with him, realising I was happier without him than with him (turned out to be a liar, cheat, etc) I had become an insecure, jealous girl. Fast forward some years, with only dating here and there, I never realised I was left with the scars. I thought he was history, I was happy again, and when I met my current beau (English), it took his love and patience to bring me back to who I was originally. I'm now secure again, confident in our relationship and trust him that he went away two weeks on a trip and I was the supportive happy partner at peace and we were both eager to reunite after. Then he took a flight for a week and again, we missed each other but there was no fears from my side. That comes from trust, from maturing as a person and re-establishing your self esteem and confidence in yourself, and others.

So try the patience route, sharing what we have told you, and researching articles. Let him try different examples of making changes. If and when all else fails, then let him see a counsellor who will help him find coping mechanisms and strategies for being in a relationship. He may refuse but knowing he has two choices: lose you or have therapy, I'm sure he will pick the right choice.

Be Happy!

Miss P

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A female reader, anonymous, writes (10 September 2013):

I disagree with those people saying it has nothing to do with culture. I am from portugal and the men do not like when we are friends with other men by ourselves - it is not seen as right.

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A male reader, WiseOwlE United States + , writes (9 September 2013):

You are young, and fascinated with the passionate-foreigner characterization he portrays.

His Latin temperament and his jealousy must be intriguing; and I can see why you're swept away by all his attention.

First off, you don't excuse men for pushing you around; because it's "cultural." That's total b*llshit. Any culture that condones mistreatment of women, you want no part of.

Portugal is not one of those nations. Men around the world have egos, and that is where all his crap springs from. Not his nationality. The men of Portugal and Spain are portrayed as passionate and romantic; but possessiveness and jealousy are insecurities. They are unacceptable in any culture, and they're universal. They spell "bad" in any language.

You are moving way too fast. All this rubbish about how you want to live the rest of your life with him; and considering marriage when you hardly understand each other.

You know nothing of his past, you don't even know if the man is married back in his country.

My friend and neighbor just went through legal acrobatics to get rid of her Italian husband; whom she discovered had not legally completed a divorce with his first wife.

She was 22, living in Italy with her mom. She fell head over heels for a hot 42 year-old playboy. Then moved back to the States. She is a U.S. citizen, he couldn't leave Italy. His first marriage caught up with him.

Good thing her parents have money, they paid the legal costs of the mess she got herself into. So be careful with dealing with older "crazy men" with backgrounds you know little about. No one ever cheated on him? They were probably terrified of him.

You're on the fast-track into a potentially abusive relationship. All the pouting and rummaging through

your private records and your bedroom, is a HUGE red-flag.

Whirlwind is not the appropriate adjective. Try irresponsible. You must always take your time to allow you both to get to know each other. Do not allow men to bully you within your relationship; and go through your private records; when he isn't your husband. You've known this man only three months, and he acts like you're his property.

Do you not know daft when you see it? This is a certified nut-case.

You are not in-love. You are enamored and fascinated with his "romantic image" and exaggerated "machismo." You've seen too many movies, my dear. This guy is more than you can handle.

It will get worse. What happens if you disobey? If you rebel? If you stand up to him in total disagreement?

You need a lot more experience, and have to be a heck of a lot more aggressive of a female; to deal with this type of man. He ruined the relationship when he took it upon himself to go through your things. Pouting, manipulation,

jealousy, invasion of your privacy. These are enough violations to throw him out, and kick his ass to the curb.

Find yourself a new boyfriend. Invite all your male friends over to help usher him out of your life.

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A female reader, CindyCares Italy + , writes (9 September 2013):

CindyCares agony auntIt's not a Portuguese thing, it's an RJ ( retroactive jealousy ) thing. It's an OCD, basically. A mental health issue. He is pathologically jealous about the present, ...but also about the past.

Me, I would not want to " resolve " this, I'd run whether he is Portugues or British or Eskimo. Just your description of his behaviour gives me the creeps , ... and you'd get them too if you weren't just in the honeymoon, butterflies in the stomach phase.

But, if you want to " resolve " this, you can't on your own, that's a therapy-worthy, or at least counseling worthy issue, he needs professional help with his distorted thinking . The first step would be for him to realize that he has a problem, second that as long this problem persists , he won't be able to have a healthy relationship. I doubt he is already at this stage of awareness ....

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A male reader, bronzed adonis United Kingdom +, writes (9 September 2013):

bronzed adonis agony auntInstead of me copying Denise32`s answer word for word, I`ll just advise you to take what she says as being very serious. You may not have even seen anywhere near the worst of it yet.

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A female reader, Denise32 United States +, writes (9 September 2013):

Denise32 agony auntYou've known him for THREE MONTHS and you want to MARRY him?

What ARE you thinking?

I have to point out a few things to you: the first is that whirlwind romances may start out hot and heavy, but they can also crash and burn pretty soon. Why? because one is so "blinded" by infatuation so as not to have a clear head, heart and mind as to what kind of man (or woman if I were writing to a man posting this) you are dealing with.

Admittedly, SOMETIMES whirlwind romances can turn into something more long lasting and happy. However, generally it takes a year or more to really get to know one another and to see if you are compatible. I've experienced that myself: someone I hoped to perhaps make a future with, after the first year I began to realize was totally unsuitable.

This man is bad news: look at it: he's overly possessive, jealous (of someone in an old photo you dated years ago, for heaven's sake!!) Doesn't like you being on Facebook because "it's full of men"; looked through your belongings -which is when he found the photo - and lawd knows what else he was looking for. Right off hand I'd say it was "evidence"

of other men - not to mention the fact that he had absolutely no business going through your stuff in the first place!

The list is almost endless - checking up on you while you were on holiday with your gay male friend, complaining about your clothes, and questioning everything, demanding to know why you wanted to be away from HIM!

Hells bells (excuse language) I can't imagine why you didn't - and don't run as far away from this "jewel" as your legs can carry you! Better still, don't run - DRIVE its a better way to put as much distance between you and him as possible!

Is his behavior/attitude a cultural thing? No - it's his craziness.

I pray that you "see the light" and GET RID of this man without delay - unless you want a future of being unhappy and persecuted by him!

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