Dear Coleen

I’m in a fantastic relationship, or so I thought.

I’m 35, my girlfriend is 37, and has a seven-year-old daughter from a previous marriage. We have been together for three years and I love her daughter like my own.

However, while clearing a room prior to decorating, I found an old file of ­paperwork.

I asked my ­girlfriend if she needed it, and she told me to have a look through it.

I was dumbfounded when I found a Clare’s Law check [the right to ask police if a partner poses a risk] carried out on me at her request.

I asked her to explain it and she said it was “nothing” and tried to laugh it off.

That was a week ago and I’m ­struggling to understand it all. I’ve told her I feel offended and now I’m making excuses not to be near her. I’m even considering leaving the relationship.

When we talked about it she ­apologised, but I’m still seriously considering walking out. If she doesn’t trust me, why should I stay?

I’ve never been in trouble, I’m a serving soldier, and just cannot get over this.

She is concerned about my behaviour now because I’ve shut myself off, and I’m so close to telling her we’re over. Am I reacting rationally?

Coleen says

I actually admire your girlfriend – she was going into a new relationship as a single parent with a young daughter. She didn’t know your past and, we have to accept that if someone does have a criminal record, they might not admit to it.

I don’t think it’s a case of her not trusting you, she was just making sure everything would be OK for her daughter – she was being a responsible parent.

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Putting myself in your shoes, if a new partner asked me if it was OK to get me checked out, I’d say “absolutely” because I’d know they wouldn’t find anything.

So I think it would help you to get over this by putting yourself in her shoes and putting your pride or ego to one side.

Many women have got into ­relationships and only find out when it’s too late that their partner has a domestic violence conviction.

This law protects potentially vulnerable people, and I think it’s a great thing.

If you love her and her daughter as you say you do, then be honest about your feelings, but then move on. Throwing in the towel now wouldn’t make any sense.

I understand how you feel but, from her point of view, I also understand it’s quite hard to tell your partner upfront that you want to get them checked out.

Think about how devastated you’d be if you broke up and she went out with someone else she hadn’t checked out and something awful happened to her or her daughter.

Try not to take it personally because you shouldn’t.





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