Faithfulness: A necessary ingredient for a healthy relationship

All Woman

Dear Counsellor,
I am a Christian who was dating this person from church. We kept arguing every day. I had this friend, we became close, and we started hanging out. My boyfriend at church found out and we talked about it. We had another argument, then things just got worse and he said he can't be with a woman who cheats on him. I didn't sleep with the other guy. I honestly don't want to lose him, but it seems like he's gone for good. I don't know what to do. I am willing to sacrifice anything for him. When I try talking to him, it's pointless. It's like talking to a wall. What do you suggest I do?

Let's reset the scene to your narrative. You were dating the guy from church but the relationship was characterised by arguments. You connected with another friend behind his back and he found out and walked away from the relationship, accusing you of cheating.

For a relationship to thrive, it requires harmony and faithfulness. Surely couples will disagree, but they must learn conflict management strategies that will enable them to deal with the conflict effectively. Continuous quarrelling and arguing is not healthy and will only drive the partners away from each other.

Similarly, faithfulness is a necessary ingredient for a healthy relationship and the absence of integrity would only stunt the growth and development of the union.

So now that we established these tenets of a healthy relationship, let's look at them in relation to your situation.

It is not unusual for couples who are in a contentious relationship, for one or both partners to reach out to someone outside of the unit that will provide them with emotional support. Because you and your partner are seemingly always in combative mode, connecting with that friend who would offer a sense of harmony is not farfetched.

What seems to have happened with you is that you were developing an emotional bond with the other guy that should have been with your boyfriend. Hanging out with the friend is what you should have been doing with your boyfriend, but because of the continuous arguments the atmosphere was not conducive.

It would only be a matter of time before your boyfriend would have found out about your “hanging out” activities behind his back. As far as he is concerned, you were being unfaithful in the relationship as your interest was elsewhere and not on him or the relationship. He could either sit with you and work out the problem or terminate the relationship. Unfortunately for you he chose the latter.

You have indicated how much you care for your partner and would want him back in your life. As you plead with him to return, spend some time to ponder if his return will result in fewer arguments or more of the same. In other words, if the relationship will continue on a similar path as before then you might find yourself being distracted again.

If he comes back, you both have to learn effective ways of dealing with conflicts so that the tension would be reduced and a harmonious relationship is established and maintained.

Wayne Powell is a relationship counsellor. Write to agapemft@gmail.com. Check his Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/MFTCounselor/.

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