I have been dating a girl for almost one year and a half now. I am 24 and she is 22 and we are both from South America.
We started as friends with benefits but after meeting for almost 6 months we started dating. I would like to point out that we really didn't talk about it, I just assumed that after 6 months being friends with benefits, it would be time to be a couple and so did her, we did talk about being exclusive though.
Now, I really like this girl and enjoy being with her as she's so much fun. The problem is that since I was little I have been always caring about what others may think. Therefore, when I go outside with her, or if I have to introduce her to my colleagues or friends, I am ashamed as I really care of what will others might think about her physical appearance.
I know this is my problem and there is no way that it is her fault. However, this fact makes it impossible to me to see her as a girlfriend, as I am not comfortable hanging out with her when other people might see us. I would like to see her as a friend as apart from that aspect and as I stated before I really like her and enjoy being with her, but I feel that somehow I am cheating her while being a couple as she doesn't know that I don't want her as a gilfriend until this problem is fixed, I would like to keep her as a friend of friends with benefits.
She does know that I am ashamed of being in public of her and so one as she realized and asked me why I was not uploading picture of both of us in social networks and so on. What she doesn't know is that I don't see her as a girlfriend due to this fact.
After talking with a friend of mine I have realised that this behaviour is not good as I am not being honest and I would like to tell her the truth, I would like to you to point me out some ideas on how to approach the topic.
Just for you to know, lastly we have not been well together as I am going alone on a trip for 1 month with one of my best friends who I met before her and who I have been liking for more than 2 years now (I like both of them). So my SO is really jealous and with reason as I talk a lot with my friend and I wouldn't mind to have an affair with the friend I am going with to the trip even if my SO doesn't know that. My SO doesn't know I still like this girl.
My best friend has boyfriend and she lives far away from me -another continent- so I don't want to be in a relationship with her, although if she lived near me without boyfriend I would consider the option as I really like her too. I don't want to stop my relationship because of the trip of because of her, I just feel that I am not being honest.
Any advice will be welcome. And if you need any other info to help me on how to approach this situation, feel free to ask.