I've been in a two-year relationship with a guy who was my first serious partner and my first sexual experience. It was all great with little ups and downs—until seven months ago when I discovered he was cheating. I came to his house and there was a girl living with him. She said he was dating her while dating me and they had several sexual intercourses while she was there. My self-esteem fell and I felt incredibly bad about myself. I also had an unprotected intercourse with him and found myself pregnant. Thank God I just had to take the pill abortion.

My friends tried to support me but I was pushing them away and for three days I didn't come out of bed even just to eat or drink. I felt used and dirty. But in the end, I found myself forgiving him and getting back with him. My friends didn't really understand but supported my decision. But about four months later he had to leave due to family matters. We decided to stay together. It was all good as I was absorbed with studies, he was helping out his family, studying and working.

After two months of dating long distance our communication started fading and we grew distant. Once I went to a party with friends and met this guy, let's call him Sam. He was a physical copy of my boyfriend but smarter, sweeter, and nicer. For the next week we went out on a couple of dates but we were usually around my friends that were trying to get us together. Two weeks passed, my best friend threw a birthday party, and Sam was invited. Of course everyone got drunk and someone started reminding me how I got cheated on and I felt this strong anger and had sex with Sam. Wasn't as great as sex with my boyfriend.

I kept seeing Sam until about two days ago when my boyfriend texted to say he is coming to see me in two weeks time. But my boyfriend will have to go away until November shortly after. I'm not sure what to do. I do feel like I'm starting to like Sam, however, I keep finding myself wanting to run back to my boyfriend. I just can't keep my thoughts off my boyfriend. Even though every time he touches me I can see him touching another girl in the same way. I'm so lost and I really don't know what to do anymore. I want to be happy and I don't want to hurt anyone. I'm moving in a year (transferring unis) and my boyfriend was supposed to go with me but I don't really know what I want. I can't even understand myself.

Sneaky And Distant Guy's Impending Return Looms

My first inclination, SADGIRL, is to tell you to dump both of them—your nameless boyfriend and Sam, his physical double. Right now you're balancing two boys, lying about one of them, worrying your boyfriend is doing the same with other girls, while preparing to move and still in university. So dump them both, focus on yourself, your move, and your studies, and get back into the dating scene once you know and understand what you want and know and understand yourself a little better. At the very least, SADGIRL, dump your boyfriend who lives far away, and keep seeing Sam—until you transfer unis and then maybe dump Sam too, get a fresh start, meet some new boys, etc.

And I hate to this but I have to say it because it's my job (and your friends should be saying it too, if they're doing their jobs)...

Your shitty long-distance boyfriend is probably seeing other girls. Your shitty long-distance boyfriend is definitely seeing/fucking/dating other girls... just as his hurt and still reeling girlfriend is seeing/fucking/dating other guys another guy. There's a difference between what he did and what you're doing, of course; he had another girl living with him while he was dating you and you started dating someone else while you were living far away from each other and not hearing much from him. It's not great to sleep with someone for revenge—which is how you describe the not-great-first-sexual-encounter with Sam—but sometimes a relationship that needs to end doesn't until a new one is underway. Sometimes we engineer a messy ending because a clean one didn't happen by magic.

I'm not sure how old you are, SADGIRL, but it seems you're somewhere between late teens and early twenties. You'll have other relationships. In fact, you're having another one right now with a guy you think is smarter, sweeter, and nicer than your soon-to-be ex-boyfriend. The sex wasn't as good—but with some effort, clarity, and focus (and a little less guilt), perhaps the sex can get better.

And if you don't want to dump Sam after you transfer in a year, don't. In fact, maybe it's Sam—if things work out—who should go with you. If not, I bet they have boys at the university you're transferring to.

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