On one of our first dates, I lied to my partner about which campus of U of Michigan I attended. I said I attended Ann Arbor, but really went to UM -Dearborn. I suffered from low self-esteem ( why U lied in the first place), and did not want to tell him for fear of losing him (low self-esteem again). Within the last year, I have made gains on my self-esteem, and want to tell my partner no matter the consequence. I would be hurt if the shoe was on the other foot. Can you help me think of how to tell him this? Should I take him to my therapist office to do so? How can I break the news somewhat gently.
-guilt-ridden, wanting to be true
In the grand scheme of things - this is not a terrible act of deception - but a little lie you told to gain someone's love and respect. And it's out of love and respect that you want to tell him the truth.
Just tell him you need to talk... say you feel really bad about this thing... that it's hard to admit to him... and that you told him something that wasn't true when you met him, because you acted impulsively and you wanted so badly for him to like and respect you. Then just spit it out.
If you want to do this confession at your therapists office - that sounds like a fine option too.
If he really cares for you, I think he should be able to find it in his heart to let it go, without this tarnishing the relationship. Nobody's perfect. We all have done things we're not proud of. A person who can come clean, and apologize is a person who deserves to be respected all the more.
Ben Schwarcz, MFT
Santa Rosa Psychotherapist