I’m so broken and I think I have been for awhile. I’ve been doing the long distance thing with my boyfriend while away at college. The night before last I cheated on him. Things had been going pretty well and he’s extremely sweet. My ex-boyfriend, who had been in juvenile hall for awhile, was just released from State custody when he turned 18 a few days back. He told me he missed me, he was sorry for hurting me and that he stopped drinking. That was something that had gotten to me. The guy I slept with last year was actually an older guy. When I initially told my boyfriend, he seemed upset and said he felt insecure. He then cried and told his parents. This was unfortunate because they used to like me. We talked a bit more about it and he thinks it’s really gross. To be honest, I think he believes I’m gross. I think he just realized how messed up I am. I told him a lot about my past and he had accepted that. Then we started talking about the older guys I’d been with and I admitted that I had sex for money previously a couple of times. He said he wouldn’t leave me but that I should know how wrong this is and that even if we weren’t together it’s still wrong. To be honest, I remember when this brokenness started and it was awhile back when my first time happened. It was with this guy that helped with this charity my mom and I got stuff from, including at one point housing us when things were really bad. Initially he forced himself on me and I was pretty disturbed, but after awhile I started to like it when he got me gifts. I’ve kind of sought out older, wealthier guys since then. It’s bad because I’m still not 18 yet, and I have a boyfriend my age. And unlike my last one, this one really loves me. He’s never said anything to hurt me and I don’t know if I’m still actively working to ruin our life together. I’ve really poured myself into grades so much that I’ve skipped three grades, and I’m doing really well. I’m obsessed with my college’s business club that I’m president of and I wonder why everything else is so much easier. Now we’ve decided we’re going to get back together. When I see him in a month my hope is that we can forget about all this, but he said he’ll never forget. I feel like a terrible person. I honestly don’t even know how to be a better girlfriend.
- Confusion and regret about the past can make you feel like a horrible person. You are smart for making an honest effort to face your negative emotions and for considering your actions.
- The only way you can have a genuine relationship is to learn to love yourself first. This means you must have the courage to be yourself and take time to really get to know yourself. Being yourself will naturally attract the right people to you.
- Also, in order to love yourself, you must respect yourself. You cannot truly love someone else until you learn this. For one thing, you are under age and this older man broke the law by taking advantage of your innocence as a teenager. Consider reporting this man to the police. Never allow a man or any person to disrespect you in any way.
- Talk to a psychologist or trusted adult about your issues. You are not gross, you are human. Someone who truly loves you would understand this.
- Even though cheating on your boyfriend is wrong, you’re still young and even damaged. Try only being friends with your boyfriend for now so that you can get help.
- After you get help, you can try having a real relationship with your boyfriend. Be realistic and remember that it may or may not work out.
- Be responsible for your actions more often. Taking on more responsibility may be just what you need to put your focus on things that really matter. Keep busy with chores or even a part-time job.
- You cannot have a real relationship until you can be a responsible and mature person. You may try focusing on preparing for your future by maintaining good grades in school.
- Try to take your mind off things by being a normal teenager. Some activities you may do are art, listening to music or join a club. Also, volunteering for a good cause may bring you meaning and help you understand a higher way of life. Some great organizations are Habitat for Humanity, American Red Cross and Boys & Girls Club of America.
- Make an effort to be more spiritual. You are not a physical object to be used by others. You are a real person with feelings. You may go to the Teen Central website and click on Spirituality under the Learn tab.
- On the Teen Central website, under the Help tab, there is a National Sexual Assault Hotline. It is NEVER okay for an older man to touch a teenager inappropriately, even if you let yourself like it. This is completely wrong.
- What will your future be like if you continue to let men take advantage of you and in what ways can you stop allowing this?
- Can you think of any positive role models to look up to such as a loved family member or even a celebrity to look up to?
- In what ways can you change your life for the better and how can you realistically accomplish these things?