She Cheated - Now I Have Issues

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Visitor's Question:
My girlfriend and I have been together for about 8 months, and everything was great until about 2 months ago.

We have a long distance relationship, because we met on the net. We became very close over a period of time and started going out together, though only through the web until I went to see her at Christmas. It was the best time I've ever had, and we gave each other our first kisses. (Granted we did other stuff too, but we had both never even kissed a member of the opposite sex on the lips before) (We're both 17 by the way) She said that it was the best time she'd had in her entire life as well.

When we first started going out, I had my doubts about whether she would remain faithful to me, but she was and all my doubts faded away. She swore on her love for me that she would never cheat on me, and so I didn’t think she would.

Her birthday happened shortly after Christmas, and she had a little to drink at a party that her friends threw for her and she was told by her friends to cheat on me and they persuaded her to do it. She then cheated on me with two other guys, and two days later, she told me. I was heartbroken, and devastated. I remained with her, and she swore on her love for me that she would never do it again, but she swore on her love for me that she wouldn’t do it in the first place. I love her more than anything, and I would do anything for her, but I'm incredibly afraid that if she drinks, or lets her friends persuade her into doing stuff again, I will end up being hurt once more. I know that if she did do that once more, that I couldn’t stand to be with her, and I know I would leave her. I almost left her when she told me. The thing is, she can't even bring herself to realize that what she did was cheating.

I want to trust her, but I can’t forget what she did. Since she did that, I've become controlling, jealous, and untrusting of her. I think she's sincere about what she said about not doing it again, but I'm very afraid that she will do it again just in case. I thought that she was sincere before, and I KNOW she meant to be.

I know that I was a little jealous before, (I wouldn’t freak if she was given a compliment or if another guy looked her up and down, or even if they hooted and hollered at her, which all has happened since we've been going out) but now, if anything happens, I become afraid and controlling. I know things can never be like they were before, but I just wish I could go back to the way it was, and I wish I could be assured that she wouldn’t do it again. I love her with all my heart and soul, and I just want to make her happy and not feel like she's always under the microscope and to do that, I think I need to somehow become as I was before.

Please tell me what to do to make things better. I just want to make her happy and not be so afraid myself.

Our Suggestion:
How can she not know it was cheating? That doesn't make any sense at all. If she doesn't even have any sense of right, wrong and betrayal, then is she really mature enough to be in a relationship. You can't make her change. One of the things about relationships is that you have to accept someone the way they are - and realize when the person is NOT what is good for you.

So have a long talk with your girlfriend and find out where she stands. Maybe she's just not ready to be monogamous. It'll be sad, but it's better to be honest than to force someone to stay in a situation they are unhappy with. Also, if she really doesn't understand why honesty is important, then maybe it's time just to be friends. You really can't have any sort of relationship if she feels she can just cheat on a whim and it doesn't matter.

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