Dear Amy: My boyfriend and I have been together for three years. We decided to make some major sacrifices in order to pay off debt and save up for a house.

We were both working out with a personal trainer. I quit because I found a cheaper option. My boyfriend started seeing the trainer three times per week. I think this is irresponsible, and this is why my boyfriend decided to cover it up and lie about it — badly.

I caught on, but rather than be accusatory, I told him that if he wants to see the trainer to not feel as if he has to hide it. Even then he continued to lie.

Today I found his gym clothes crumpled up and hidden. I confronted him and he finally came clean. He told me he was lying to protect my feelings. What?

Do I have a right to be upset? Am I being controlling?

Amy says: Your boyfriend sounds like a bit of a baby. You gave him an out, and instead of coming clean, he doubled down on his lie.

Honestly, taking good care of oneself is a good idea — even when you’re trying to economize. But your guy’s choice to watch you stop, while increasing his own training, is selfish and immature. He didn’t lie to protect your feelings; he lied to protect his.

I don’t believe this is a deal breaker, but put it into context by taking a look at your relationship: Are you always in charge? Are you the “responsible” one? Do you feel like you are parenting him?

If so, then understand that this is not a great dynamic. Healthy relationships have a sense of balance — you are good at some things, he is good at others. You take care of one another, admit to your mistakes and always strive to do better.

Smokeless tobacco gross, too

Dear Amy: I have two grown sons in their mid-30s. Both use smokeless tobacco.

They are well aware that smoking is obnoxious to most people, hence their choice of “smokeless” tobacco (chaw).

Recently, we had an outdoor family gathering. While we were around the fire, they both stuffed their cheeks with tobacco, and then expectorated into empty water bottles. Finally, I said an early goodnight and left.

My wife chooses to ignore this and thinks it was rude of me to leave. She said I should “learn” to accept this and apologize. What do you think?

Amy says: It seems logical that the accepted “rules” applying to smoking should also apply to chaw. They should consume their tobacco product away from non-tobacco users. I realize that there is no “secondhand” component toxicity to chewing tobacco, other than being grossed out by people filling cups with their spit.

Your wife can tolerate it — the same way some people will tolerate smoking. You won’t.

I agree with your choice to leave when you couldn’t take it anymore. Furthermore, you should explain yourself to your sons. You don’t owe them an apology.


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