CAN A RELATIONSHIP BE SALVAGED AFTER MY BOYFRIEND HAS BEEN SEEING A DOMINATRIX, PAYING FOR IT WITH OUR CREDIT CARD?

DEAR DALI MAMA:

I recently found out my boyfriend of several years has been into S&M and has been frequenting a dominatrix. We have been living together for two years and I found out because of strange and repeated large charges of $250-$500 at a time on our credit card. I don’t know how I could have not known this was going on and feel that this is the breaking point of our relationship. Can it be salvaged or is there even any point? I feel like I don’t even know who he is. That I never ever actually knew him.

–Confused & Hurt (United States)

DEAR CONFUSED & HURT:

I completely understand how your confusion and pain. This is a case of financial betrayal as well as emotional and sexual betrayal, although S & M is a lot more about control and punishment and domination and submission than it is about intimacy and sex.

I suggest you start by both seeing a relationship counselor as well as individual counseling and that you get a little more neutral to the situation first, and then decide on what is the best course of action for you. Either way, it will help you process what happened whether you decide to stay or to go.

You might also want to talk to your individual therapist or counselor about the possibility of separating out your finances, at least for now, so you are not liable for such charges if they put your finances in a precarious position.

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