"I made up a fake life story, then my boyfriend found me out"

Dear Coleen

I’ve known my boyfriend for a long time now, but I’ve lied to him about just about everything in terms of my life – about my family and friends, and where I live.

At the time, I thought it would make me sound cooler and I never thought the relationship would really go anywhere, and that we’d just be great friends.

I guess I just wanted to be this really cool girl who was different from everyone else. I wanted him and other people to like me, if I’m honest.

I ended up falling for him though, and he felt the same about me, so I stayed quiet about all the lies and just hoped he wouldn’t ask me anything too deep about myself.

I figured we’d probably split up at some point and I wouldn’t have to tell him the truth.

However, months passed and we stayed together. I tried to come clean on several occasions about my background, but exams and other things got in the way and I just couldn’t do it. Plus, I didn’t want to spoil it.

Of course, he found out and I felt stupid and embarrassed and really guilty for lying to him. God knows what he must have thought of me. He was clearly heartbroken and it was horrible to see him like that.

I don’t know how to make it right – please help.

Coleen says

If I were you, I’d tell him exactly what you’ve said in this letter – explain why you felt you had to lie and how you got in so deep that you couldn’t find a way to turn back and were scared of losing him.

Tell him you didn’t think you were cool enough for him, so you created this whole life for yourself.

It was down to a lack of confidence in yourself, which backfired, and you didn’t expect the relationship to turn into something so special.

Although I feel bad for your boyfriend – it’s horrible to be lied to – I actually feel more heartbroken for you, as you felt you had to lie because you don’t like yourself enough.

For me, that’s the saddest part and that’s what you have to work on. You need to be confident that people will love you for who you really are and the way to start is to learn to love and appreciate yourself.

But, look, you lied about your lifestyle – it’s not like he found out you had an affair or were married to someone else.

He won’t have stayed with you because of those things, he will have done so because he loves you as a person.

If you are with the right person you are enough, and it doesn’t matter about all the bells and whistles.

However this turns out, the lesson here is that it’s not worth lying.

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