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Leaving a Man I Really Care For,
Because I've Fallen in Love with Someone Else 

Dear Dr Matt

My name is Channing, i live in Boston. Im 33 and single. I got your email address from a friend that you helped a few yrs ago... i hope you can help me.

OK im in a relationship with a really great guy... he is my bestfriend (M) and we have dated for 2 yrs... he has been there for me through my ups and downs with my family and i am grateful for that but i am no longer in love with him... i have fallen for someone else(D) and he is being very patience about the whole thing actually a whole year patience... just waiting for me to finally decide to leave...

Now i dont want to lose (M) as a friend and i dont know how to go about doing that... and i dont know what i should tell (D)... (D) gets in his moods sometimes and just wants to end it cause he is tired of waiting. im so confused... i know someone will get hurt but who?

i really want to have real relationship with (D) he has been there for me this past year... its hard cause we work together... and neither one of us want to quit our job... (D) tells me to let him go and i get upset and not talk to him for the rest of the day but the next day at work i cant help it. (M) and i fight alot... we do live together... so i have (M) at home and (D) at work... everyother night i go hang out with (D) until late hours of the night...

I really need help... ive asked friends but i wanted someone elses advice... someone who can lead me in the right path... i know that its wrong holding on to both of them...

Thank you for your time...



Dear Channing:

Yes, I can help you! I can put you in touch with True Principles, which is the magic that will help you ultimately.

Notice your words to me: "i am no longer in love with him... i have fallen for someone else."

That special spark of chemistry and attraction is important to have in any relationship -- especially one that leads to marriage. Truth is . . . you can begin a relationship with that "spark" but over time the fire of attraction that was initially there, will inevitably fade. This will likely be true with "D" if you choose to pursue a relationship with him.

Although it is FUN and temporarily intoxicating, "Falling in Love" is a state of imbalance: In the end, the most satisfying and stable relationships will nurture the Love that Stands! Unfortunately, you may find yourself "falling" out of love with "D" just as you have "fallen" in love with him.

Moral to the Story: QUIT FALLING and Start STANDING. It is vital that you get clear on what the Highest Kind of Love looks like.

Because you know that holding on to relationships with M & D is wrong, you need to cease this behavior immediately. There is a reason WHY you have not done this already, . . . and the reason is YOU. Who You Are presently is keeping YOU from doing what you ought to do.

To take care of YOU and begin to grow in strength of character, following the True Principles detailed in my book "Changing Your Stripes" is essential.

In conjunction with getting on the path of "Changing Your Stripes," you need to take action as to your 2-timing behavior. The good news is this: As YOU begin to change YOU . . . you will find the strength of character to do all that you ought to do.

When I speak of "2-timing," I am not belittling you; instead, I am describing WHAT IS. You and I and everyone have weaknesses and challenges to overcome: So join the club! We're all in this Life to become MORE than we currently ARE -- to find fulfillment through making honest choices and living true!

Because you are living with M, this likely means you are having sex with him. And as you also spend private time with D, this means . . . you are cheating. Cheating is the wrong thing to do. My advice to you is no difference than the advice I'd give to a person who is married and cheating on their spouse.

To the married person, I advise: QUIT CHEATING! And either make your marriage work OR end the marriage. And when you are legally divorced and officially single . . . it is then you can begin doing single things (like dating & hanging out) with a clear conscience.

Again, you likely do not have the strength of character to do all this in its proper order, else you would have already been doing it! The fact that you have NOT avoided the 2-timing trap you are in, points to a need to CHANGE YOU.

Changing You from your heart, will give you the strength of character to:

        1 - Quit having sex with M
        2 - Quit living with M
        3 - End your intimate relationship with M and begin a friendship (if he is willing).
        4 - Don't spend time alone with D, until you have taken care of items #1 #2 and #3 completely.
        5 - Absolutely do not have sex with D, until you have taken care of #1 #2 and #3 completely.

As long as you are having sex with M and/or living with M, you are NOT being fair to M by spending time alone with D (and neither are you being fair to D) -- you already know this. This means you are NOT living an honest life. Not being True and Honest is the cause of your inner and outer turmoil.

As for your relatings with D, . . . you need to conduct yourself in the same way a married woman would conduct herself in regard to single people. Do things in order: Take care of your dealings with M . . . and when #1, #2, and #3 are completely resolved . . . THEN proceed with a relationship with D (if he is still willing and waiting).

But if D doesn't "wait" . . . it is still better to live with integrity and do things in proper order in the long run. This means, as you QUIT hanging out with "D" (because you are still living with, and/or having sex with M), . . . D may decide to lose patience and quit waiting for you.

You need to simply do the right thing . . . and let consequences come as they may. You cannot control the way either M or D respond to your choices. BUT you can control your choices, whether they are Honest and True -- this is the BEST you can do!

Don't put the cart before the horse: Live with order and integrity. This way, you will have a clear conscience and peace in your heart.

I can't say all that needs to be said in one email, but this info will point you in the right directions. You will also benefit from reading my replies to these two people who also had a hard time getting out of relationships: A Woman Wanting to End a Marriage and A Man trying to Leave a Manipulating Woman.


Matt Moody, Ph.D.
Social Psychologist

* * * * * * *

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The Greatest Prize
for Life's labors isn't
in material possessions
or impressive accomplishments,
but in the progress of personal character.
You labor for your own becoming, this is your richest reward.
Who You Become is your greatest possession,
make it your Masterpiece!

(Changing Your Stripes, 2nd Edition, page 274)

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Social Psychologist & Personal Advisor

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