DEAR ABBY: After being single for several years, I met the man of my dreams. "Chet" was everything I was searching for. We have become very close, and I'd trust him with my life. For nearly a year our relationship has been bliss. Chet seems to be completely devoted to me.
He told me when we first met that his wife had died seven years ago from diabetes. He seemed upset at the memory of her loss, and I never pressed him for more details. He wears a lock of her hair braided to his, and I never really thought much about it.
Well, Chet took me "home" for the Easter holiday. Some things were casually said in passing, and his story began to unravel. After I got home I accessed public records and found in place of a death certificate, a judgment for divorce in 2001! I couldn't believe that Chet would lie to me. I felt such a deep connection to him.
When I confronted him about it, he told me that to him, she IS dead. He says he never looks back, only forward, and that he didn't want to discuss it further. When I brought up the trust issue, he said he had never cheated on me or been with another woman -- completely ignoring the fact he'd lied.
I could understand his wearing his deceased wife's hair -- but his divorced wife's? Now he says it isn't her hair; it's hair he bought and he likes the way it looks. Then why did he tell me it was his wife's hair? I want more than anything to get past this because we really are good together. Please help me. -- DAZED IN DENVER
DEAR DAZED: Your confusion is understandable, but for your own sake you must open your eyes and see clearly. The man you would trust with your life is someone who dwells in his own reality; he bends the truth for his own convenience. Your relationship may feel warm and cozy, but you can't believe a word the man says -- and my advice to you is to double-check EVERYTHING he has told you.
Your boyfriend appears to be a compulsive liar, and if you are wise, you will end the relationship before you get sucked in any further. You fell in love with the person he portrayed himself to be, but it's not who he really is at all.