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In shock, I saw my son kiss another girl while out on a supposed date with his long-term girlfriend.

It was around 5pm when my daughter, who is 13 years old, and I, a 43-year-old father, went to pick up dinner near our house. As we were waiting for our order, my daughter touched my arm and pointed across the restaurant. I followed her gaze and saw my 16-year-old son sitting in a booth with a girl. This surprised me because he had told my wife and me that he was going on a date with his long-term girlfriend of two years at 5pm. The girl next to him was definitely not his long-term girlfriend, and they were sitting very close to each other. Sensing the tension, I urged my daughter to stay seated and not let our son see us.

The waitress approached their table and placed their drinks down. I watched as my son and the girl kissed and then took a sip from their drinks. My daughter’s eyes widened in disbelief. Our pizza arrived shortly after, but my attention kept returning to my son and his actions. He remained engrossed in his phone while the girl leaned in, her head resting on his shoulder. Throughout their time at the restaurant, my son never looked to his right, so he had no idea we were there. In silence, my daughter and I drove back home, both carrying the weight of what we had witnessed.

Discovering that my son is cheating on his long-term girlfriend is deeply disappointing. He has been in a committed relationship with her for two years, and as far as I knew, he had treated her with respect. His long-term girlfriend is a genuinely kind person and an incredibly talented artist. It was actually she who asked him out first, and now she will be devastated by his betrayal. My daughter shared that the girl he was with is a cheerleader and quite popular in their grade. It struck me as odd because my son has always been drawn to artistic individuals. I wonder what led him to change his preferences.

As of now, my son hasn’t returned home. My wife, who is 42 years old, and I are at a loss about what to do. Confronting him immediately is necessary, but we want to approach the conversation without putting him on the defensive.

It’s now midnight, and my son has just walked through the door, greeting us briefly before heading to his room. Given the late hour, my wife and I have decided to discuss whether we should address the situation tonight or wait until tomorrow morning. We appreciate all the advice we have received so far, and any additional input is welcome.

We have decided to speak with our son tomorrow.

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