dear andy, my boyfriend is a stalker and i’m scared

Dear Andy, my boyfriend is stalking me and I’m not sure what to do. I’m 23 and I go to college and work part time. I met him at the bar out of all places. He was nice to me and I liked that about him. He likes me for who I am and not for how I look. I’m a bit chubby. He’s as thin as a rail. We’ve been together for about six months. Now he’s stalking me. When we first met he told me that he was still in the closet and peeking out to see what was out there. Creepy statement.

The first time I noticed something wrong was a month ago. He was outside my school waiting for me. I didn’t ask him to pick me up. I have my own car. So it was kind of odd to see him there. The second time I saw him down the street from my parents’ house. I hadn’t had a chance to invite him to meet the family yet. Last week he was at my work–in the parking lot for a whole hour in his car. I’m afraid of confronting him because what if he’s a psycho or a serial killer? Or worse. He becomes violent and hurts me and my family? I’m not sure what to do. What should I do?

– Stalked From the Closet

Hi Stalked From the Closet,

The best advice I can give you is to stay calm. This is a serious matter and some of your friends and family will laugh at you and call you insecure and maybe tell you that you’re the one that’s crazy. Others will say that you’re just being a big drama queen. It happens more often than not. It’s when the victim is found in the gutter they feel remorse. Don’t let that happen to you.

The reality of the situation we will never know. So don’t bank on finding out what his issue is. The most important thing for you to do is stop the relationship in an amicable way. It’s not going to be easy. You’re going to have a lot of opposition from everyone so don’t take that to heart. They just don’t know what to do and instead of helping they will make things worse.

Go to the police department to gather information from them. Don’t go in there accusing him of stalking until you’re sure and have more than ample evidence. Start journaling each encounter: when you saw him stalking, where it was, and what time it happened. Write down the times you see him, whether you spoke with him or not. Write it down. Make sure you only write out the facts and stay away from making guesses of why he did it. If you can, take a picture without being seen. Don’t go seeking him out. That’ll just make you look like a stalker.

Be brave. The last thing you need is to put yourself in danger by being afraid and freaking out. Only tell people you trust, so they can back up your journal entries. What you want to have in your possession are facts and evidence.