Dear V: Caught red-handed … or so she thought

Dear V,

My cousin is visiting from out of town so we’ve been spending time together. Since she lives across the country, I’ve been taking her to local events and showing her around.

I guess my girlfriend got the wrong idea because she’s been asking why I’ve been distant lately. I didn’t even get the chance to answer her text before she told me one of her friends sent her “proof” that I was cheating: a picture of me and the “dumb side b*tch” I was out with.

If I try to explain that I’m hanging out with my cousin, she probably won’t believe me even though it’s the truth. What should I do?


Innocent Until Proven Guilty

Dear Innocent Until Proven Guilty,

Life isn’t a “Law and Order” episode. If your girlfriend had a problem with your behavior, she should’ve talked to you directly before sending her squad out to hunt you down for evidence.

You’re not a criminal, so you shouldn’t be treated like one. If you’ve never cheated before, she had no right to climb into your business like this – especially since you’re not doing anything suspicious. There’s nothing wrong with hanging out with someone of the opposite gender, whether or not they’re family. I’m sure she wouldn’t appreciate you accusing her of cheating every time she grabs a beer with her guy friends.

Unfortunately, some people have a tendency to be possessive and jealous. Whether it stems from a lack of trust or an awful experience of being cheated on in the past, sometimes one party thinks the other has been unfaithful when that isn’t the case.

Usually, I’d say to patch it up with your girl, but here it’s best for you to move on.

It was totally disrespectful of her to send her friends to stake you out like that, not to mention calling your cousin a “dumb side b*tch.”

It might just be sneaking a picture of you now, but in the future this will turn into reading your texts and emails, stealing your phone passcode, following you to work and even demanding you ditch your female friends.

Don’t condone her behavior by defending yourself. Leave her alone to work out her issues and move on to a girl who won’t track your every move.

Heck, dig out a family picture of you and your cousin and send it to her. Make it clear you’re not dating your “dumb side b*tch” cousin and you’re no longer dating her, either.

It’s time to find someone who wants a healthy, jealousy-free relationship.