You’ve seen celebrity clinical psychologist Dr. Sherry Blake, author of The Single Married Woman: True Stories of Why Women Feel Alone in Their Marriages keep the Braxton sisters calm on the hit show, Braxton Family Values. Now it’s your turn to sit in her chair…

Dear Dr Sherry,

About six years ago, my stepmother’s best friend asked me to uplift her son who was incarcerated. Initially, I had no interest because I didn’t know the real reason why he was in jail but as time went by I felt like a few kind words could really help him stay in good spirits. So I started to write him letters and as time passed I began open up and explain to him that I had been hurt by men and I was scared to fall in love again. He promised me he would never do that to me and couple of months after we started writing to each other, we began to talk on the phone and I found out he’s not a bad person and I also found out the real reason why he is in jail.

The more we talk to each other, the more we like each other. A year after we started talking via letters, we become a couple. When I can, I’ll send him money to help out with his son he had in a previous relationship. I do everything he asks me to do but 3 years ago I found out that he speaks to other women behind my back.

When I comforted him he lied to me even though I had proof. I also found out that he told his best friend that I was not his type because of the way I look but there was something about me that made me special and made him want to talk to me for the past six years. We have broken up and got back together so many times. I feel like he doesn’t want to let me go me but he says that at times I’m too emotional for him. 

He will be home in one month and he broke up with me because he wants to get his self together when he gets out but just a year ago he was telling me how much he loves me and he wants to be with me, get married and have a baby. 

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Now that he is coming home all that changed. He would still like to be friends and he’s asked me to help him get a job and get back into school. He also told me he wants to sleep with me but no strings attached. 

I don’t know what to do because I love him but I don’t want him to keep hurting me.

Hello there sis, 

Of course he was going to say he loves you, wants to marry you, and have a baby by you. He is in prison! He has said whatever he needs to in order to string you along for six years. Yes, his tone is changing as his release date get closer. I can understand why you feel confused and hurt. Your hurt and confusion are the result of you buying into a con artist game and being played. He told you what you needed to hear emotionally to get what he wanted physically. You gave him money, help take care of his child, and maintain regular contact. Being used by an inmate in a relationship is unfortunate but not uncommon. Remember, there is a reason he is a prisoner. Not only has he used you to get what he wants for six years, he plans to continue to use you. He has made it clear that he needs you to help him get a job and get back into school once he is out of prison. Don’t forget that he also told you that he wants to sleep with you without any strings attached! News Flash! While you may love him, he has never loved you. In fact, he has stated that you are not his type but there was something about you that made you special and made him want to talk to you for the past 6 years. What was “special ” was he could use you very easily. Love is blind and the desire for love is more blinding. He knew you wanted love and he took advantage of your needs. You deserve much more than being used and emotionally abused. I recommend that you seek individual therapy to understand and process how you allowed yourself to be used by this man. Also, this will also help you understand why you are having a hard time seeing his game and letting go. If you are really tried of being hurt, take control of your life and walk away. In fact, I would run away and not look back before he is released. —Dr. Sherry

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