Newest Member: Loyalandbetrayed

Just Found Out :
I found out a week ago today

Topic is Sleeping.

 Kate88 (original poster Member #75884) posted at 11:48 AM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020


I have spent some time reading the posts here and I am so sorry for all the pain on these boards. I appreciate many are going through the destruction of long marriages with more complicated circumstances and I feel so much empathy for how awful that must be.

I found out a week ago that my long term boyfriend has been unfaithful. I am now in the early stages of reacting and I was seeking advice, feedback and support because I feel (as I understand is normal) like I am on a rollercoaster.

The short version is, we have been together for three years. We have no kids together, but we both have one grown up child (we are early 40s).

It's important to say that while there will be criticisms in this post, that I was with my boyfriend because I thought he was the kindest, sweetest man I'd ever met and I felt completely safe and loved in our relationship. It was a great relationship, and I think that makes my decision here very difficult.

The only issue we ever had in our relationship from day one, was a level of fear from him regarding commitment. That's not to say that he was difficult to get monogamy or reliability from (it wasn't), but it's to say he had fear about the future based on past relationships and childhood stuff.

I tried to get him to address this a few times, but he brushed it off. Over time, he was slowly improving so I decided to let him heal slowly from the process of being in a happy, loving relationship that made him feel secure.

Then, just as we were getting very serious, he took a short term post overseas for work, the pandemic hit us, and he was unable to get home as planned so we ended up separated for the past 14 months, which is obviously a long time.

The location where he is, is extremely isolated (only maybe 100 people within a thousand miles) and there's nothing much there. the community has been locked down completely due to covid so no one can come or go.

A single co-worker (who also lives next door) started to provide "company" by inviting him on walks or popping over for Netflix, and after getting drunk this ended in sex.

He did not confess, so I did not know about it.

He let her know he loved me and regretted it, and some months passed of it being just "platonic", before the same happened again.

While this was happening, I was seriously ill with covid unfortunately and so wasn't able to speak to him very much. Which adds an extra layer to my betrayal obviously.

They then escalated into what I'd classify as a "friends with benefits" arrangement which went on for either a few weeks or a few months depending on who I believe. It involved spending time together "hanging out" at weekends, and also occasional sex which only happened when drunk.

His story is that he was constantly telling her it had to stop (she confirmed that to me), but that she was persistent and he can't answer why he was unable to stop it.

This makes me very angry as I don't understand why he didn't just stop and tell me the truth.

I found out, because he had broken things off finally. She got angry, googled me and phoned to tell me.

I was DEVASTATED. As I am sure you will all understand. The shock was just beyond comprehension because I thought out relationship was rock solid.

His story is that he was lonely, has no interest in her besides wanting a human being to "do things with" and that she had desires on him which she preyed on when he was drunk. He takes full responsibility, but he says he wants me to know there was never any feeling for her and it was just a really terrible mistake.

I am inclined to believe him because after telling me, the woman escalated to the point of harassing me to the extreme. Texting/ calling /trying to get to me on social media. She was really enraged and seems to be trying to "get rid of me". Her story has changed several times but the general picture is that she wants him and wants me out of the way.

In the end, the local police have become involved because she tried to smash down his door in rage and he's been advised to call them if she comes anywhere near him as she's unstable. I have blocked her on everything due to the harassment but my stomach turns every time my phone rings.

Where we are at right now is that from his side, he has indicated in the strongest way that this was a huge mistake that he will do anything to rectify.

He is doing whatever I ask whenever I ask it. He has cut all contact with this woman (enraging her even further), and he's taken on online counselling (at my request) to get to the root of the fears he had regarding commitment and how this played into him taking a job so far away and ultimately ending up here.

He's also applied to finish his contract remotely from home, and if that's not successful he is going to quit his job (so he should be home within a few weeks).

It's obvious for me to see how much he regrets this. He's not an emotional man but he is constantly crying and says he loves me so much he will do anything, even if it takes years, for even a tiny hope of getting our life back but that he knows he doesn't deserve it.

He is doing all the right things, and because I miss my life and how happy I was I really WANT to resolve it.

But the pain I am feeling is so consuming. The thoughts are so all pervading. I don't know how I will ever understand how he lied to me like this. How he risked our life together for something so worthless. How he put me into harms way like this.

The thoughts NEVER end. I won't list them as anyone who's been through finding out a partner they loved is cheating knows all the questions that make you feel crazy.

I know I am not supposed to make a decision right away, but I feel a desperate need to.

One minute I want to end it and find someone new who didn't hurt me this way. The other minute I just want him home.

I really don't know what to do with myself.

posts: 51   ·   registered: Nov. 19th, 2020
id 8610494

Stinger ( Member #74090) posted at 12:46 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

Sorry that you are going through this. Seems people's tolerance for this varies.

For me, I could not get past it. You have no kids together and are not married. Pain is the same but getting out is less complicated.

No one can tell you what to do re remaining. But, I would consider getting out. This is a major character flaw that he has.

posts: 697   ·   registered: Mar. 24th, 2020
id 8610500

The1stWife ( Member #58832) posted at 1:35 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

I understand how you feel. The OW in my situation also refused to take “no” for an answer and tried to go after me on social media. I ignored her. So did my H.

I’m going to suggest counseling for you. Use this time apart to focus on what you want/need. You may take one look at him upon his return and decide it’s over and there’s no hope. Or you may want to try to reconcile.

Either way long distance is hard to overcome and fix things 100-%.

I expect he needs to get tested for STD/STIs.

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.

posts: 10517   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8610507

Happenedtome2 ( Member #68906) posted at 3:00 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

I would absolutely suggest counseling for yourself. You went through a triple dose of trauma by not having your partner around for over a year, being ill AND finding out that he cheated. You need to take care of yourself here regardless of how you decide to proceed with your boyfriend.

For myself, PA is a deal breaker. Period. If you are considering R, you might want him to attend AA meetings even if he is a casual/social drinker. clearly his decision making is impaired when he drinks. People like to use drinking as an excuse but it is not acceptable behavior.

DDay August 2018
Not so sure about R at this time.
My original post :

posts: 446   ·   registered: Nov. 23rd, 2018
id 8610527

sisoon ( Guide #31240) posted at 5:06 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

I know I am not supposed to make a decision right away, but I feel a desperate need to.

Of course. That's the source of the 'soon' in my ID. I have no doubt, though, that it's better to come to a good decision for yourself, even if that takes time. Trust me, healing always takes more time than one wants it to take.

One minute I want to end it and find someone new who didn't hurt me this way. The other minute I just want him home.

I really don't know what to do with myself.

So ... you have to decide between stay and go. Exactly which decision is best for you?

Hint: since your desires change every minute, you can't make a good decision for yourself yet.

I think you'll get a lot more clarity when he's home and after giving yourself time to take in all the info you have.

Not being entangled makes it easier to end the relationship, but that doesn't mean dumping him is your best option.

If you give yourself time - and especially if you work with a good IC - you'll figure out what you want. If you want to stay, you'll be able to recognize whether or not he's a good bet for the future.

[This message edited by sisoon at 11:08 AM, November 19th (Thursday)]

fBH (me) - on d-day: 66, Married 43, together 45, same sex ap
DDay - 12/22/2010
Recover'd and R'ed
You don't have to like your boundaries. You just have to set and enforce them.

posts: 25995   ·   registered: Feb. 18th, 2011   ·   location: Illinois
id 8610590

Stinger ( Member #74090) posted at 6:16 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

I would also include , probably more than the good bet in the future analysis, trying to figure out if the insult/abuse is going to eat at you forever.

I know for me, it would. I had to admit that to myself, that I am not Ghandi. I'm did not want to live that way.

posts: 697   ·   registered: Mar. 24th, 2020
id 8610614

ChumpednBroken ( New Member #74604) posted at 6:45 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

I’m so sorry you’re in this position. I haven’t shared my story because it’s so humiliating, but I’m 11 months post DDay and we’re both working really hard.

I say this gently: it’s much too soon to determine if he’s changed or “doing all of the right things.” He’s in crisis fix it mode and your heart and head are reeling. (I learned this the hard way in the early stages.)

There is something in your post that gives me pause: you stated that he takes full responsibility for cheating, BUT:

He says she preyed on him. (He chose you return over and over again and to continue sex with her. He was not victimized.)

He said he had to be drunk to have sex with her. (He chose to continue drinking around her. He also had a an arrangement specifically for sex with her -FWB- so it was well thought out and intentional. He may have been drinking, too, but alcohol was not the cause for his loss of integrity.)

Please take care of yourself and give yourself time to grieve and process.

And PS: the drama with the OW is a consequence when he dipped his **** in crazy. I’m sorry that’s an extra layer in your shit sandwich.

[This message edited by ChumpednBroken at 12:47 PM, November 19th (Thursday)]

posts: 9   ·   registered: Jun. 16th, 2020
id 8610628

Sofarsogood ( Member #71991) posted at 8:23 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

I agree with ChumpednBroken. One time might be considered a mistake, but to keep drinking and repeating the behavior is a choice. You may miss what you thought was a safe partner, but what guarantee do you have that he won't make the same "mistake" again? I'd be very cautious before I went forward with any reconciliation. Make him do the heavy lifting and go to individual counseling. Do what is best for you and heal yourself.

posts: 272   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8610665

JulyDD ( Member #75053) posted at 8:46 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

That is hard hard thing you are going through.

Know that all the input on this site that you are in early days and it IS devastating and life altering is true.

Be good to yourself. Accept the roller coaster of good hours and bad hours. You will feel like you are going crazy and "who is he?" To have your reality altered by the man you love is staggering. I was also someone who felt lucky and happy in my marriage. Then, "how did we get here?" and "How could I be so trusting and dumb." How could he throw away what you guys had built.

If I believe advice here (and I do), you and I have years to work on this. No matter if we stay or go or do a combo platter over time. These thoughts will eat at us. It's OK. We are processing.

I hope you take good care of yourself and find comfort here. I sure did.

posts: 73   ·   registered: Jul. 31st, 2020
id 8610678

Stinger ( Member #74090) posted at 8:57 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

Do not be afraid to get support from friends and family. No need to keep this buried and they might be able to advise and comfort you. They are not attached to him, so they might be more objective.

posts: 697   ·   registered: Mar. 24th, 2020
id 8610680

jb3199 ( Member #27673) posted at 9:12 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

You have definitely already received some good advice. I will also echo that you NEED to take some time to process all that has happened.....especially if you are considering reconciliation. It is consistent ACTIONS over TIME that will show how serious your BF is about trying to make amends, and there is simply no way to expedite this.

He's not an emotional man but he is constantly crying and says he loves me so much he will do anything, even if it takes years, for even a tiny hope of getting our life back

Why would he even consider cheating if he loves you so much? I will give you the answer after this next quote:

I don't know how I will ever understand how he lied to me like this. How he risked our life together for something so worthless. How he put me into harms way like this.

What it all boils down to, is that he did this BECAUSE HE WANTED TO. He had the opportunity and he took it. There was never a plan for if you found out, because there was no intention of ever telling you. What is the saying of when someone commits a crime? That they had MEANS, MOTIVE, and OPPORTUNITY. This is usually what goes through a cheater's mind. There is no need to overcomplicate it.

His fears of commitment have nothing to do with his integrity. No person or circumstance can force a person to cheat. That was done of his own free will.

2 boys
Married 28yrs.(together over 30yrs.)

All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary Puckett
D-Day(s): Enough
Accepting that I can/may end this marriage 7/2/14

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id 8610686

Buster123 ( Member #65551) posted at 10:05 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

Not married, no kids, no commitment on his part and now a proven cheater and liar ? RUN ! I know it hurts but you really haven't been together that long, so I suggest you cut your losses now and dump him, please get tested for STDs just in case, this may not be his first rodeo. If you insist on giving R a try, know that it takes between 2 to 5 years to try to recover from infidelity with your WB (wayward boyfriend) doing all the heavy lifting and necessary work and with NO guarantees, here's a few of the basic recommendations here that have stood the test of time:

1) He needs to send her an NC FOREVER text/email, short and to the point right in front of you, short and to the point (no sweet goodbyes).

2) He needs to offer FULL on demand access to his phone and all electronic devices and passwords FOREVER, no questions asked.

3) Make sure he gets tested for STDs, you should too in case he's done this before, remember cheaters lie and he's now a proven one.

4) You're supposed to be in the "honeymoon phase" of your relationship (typically the best/happiest one) and he's already cheating (not that it's ever ok but still), so DO NOT marry him anytime soon, at least not for another 5 years at a minimum, this shouldn't be difficult as you mentioned he wasn't that much interested in it anyways (another red flag), and if you ever agree to tie the knot, insist on an iron clad prenup in your favor in case he cheats again in the future.

5) He needs to go to IC to deal with his "whys", this was not "a mistake", a mistake is when you unintentionally take a wrong turn on a street or you pick the wrong type of milk, this was deliberate and he did it over and over again, he CHOSE to cheat knowing full well he was committing the ultimate betrayal.

OW was not in an exclusive relationship with you, yes she was a willing participant but again, it's not like he was hypnotized into cheating. Others will chime in with more advice, keep posting frequently.

posts: 2408   ·   registered: Jul. 22nd, 2018
id 8610692

HalfTime2017 ( Member #64366) posted at 11:33 PM on Thursday, November 19th, 2020

His story about wanting to stop and getting looped back in is pure selfishness. Its simple. We all have choices. He chose to cheat b/c he didn't think you would find out. His AP, oh what a piece of work she is. She is the homewrecking type.

I'd let her employer know shes a whore and then dump the BF. No marriage, no kids, and no financial entanglements. 3 yrs is short, compare to some of the things people have to work through here. It doesnt lessen your pain, but you should find comfort in that you will be able to move on relatively unscathed. No long drawn out divorce, kids to fight over, money and home. Cut your losses now. He just proved to you that hes a cheater, so believe him.

posts: 1142   ·   registered: Jul. 5th, 2018   ·   location: Cali
id 8610716

 Kate88 (original poster Member #75884) posted at 1:57 AM on Friday, November 20th, 2020

Thank you to everyone for the replies. A few things:

1) We haven't seen each other for 14 months so I don't need YET to think about STDs but I will take it on board. What I do know is that to enter the closed community where he is posted you need a full medical including tests for STDs. even typing this makes me feel like throwing up.

2) He has definitely sent "the end" text to the AP. This is what kicked her off in harassing me. He told her that he loved me and he could not have any contact whatsoever with her if he had any hope of getting me back. This sent her even more crazy and she started texting me "congratulations" and then escalating to saying nasty stuff. The police are involved now and he's been told if she comes near him to call them.

3) I think he has done a TERRIBLE thing, and I can't wrap my head AT ALL around doing it multiple times, and I agree he obviously didn't think I'd find out. But also, I don't believe this would be something he would ever do if we had not been separated for over a year.

4) He has stopped drinking. He never drunk at home, but he has been heavily drinking since he got there. I think mostly it's because it's all the people there do.

5) I am also not Ghandi and I am worried it will eat away at me forever. No matter what he says or does. I

6) I know he did this because he wanted to. I have said that to him myself already.

7) I don't believe his efforts or words at this stage are lies or manipulations, and telling myself that won't help me feel better. I think the remorse and intent are genuine.

8) I have told my family. They have mixed reactions. They have a really positive view of him /us so most of them are hoping we work it out but they are obviously all very protective of me.

He's now arranged an emergency evacuation to get home to be in about 10 days from now. I can't stress enough how big a deal it was for him to do this. It involves getting himself (a civilian) on a military aircraft which would normally only happen in an emergency medical evacuation.

I appreciate he has done this. I know how hard it was to do. It is some sort of help that he is doing whatever he can. He says he understands I might hate him when I see him, but he has to try.

I just have very mixed feelings. I was so excited about him coming home after so long separated by these crazy circumstances, but at the same time he is obviously not the same person who I trusted and felt safe with.

I fell asleep then woke myself up with nightmares and feel like vomiting and all anxious inside. I really don't know what to feel.

Seeing him seems better than NOT seeing him, and I want to talk in person and also see him, but I know in the back of my mind that it will be really difficult too.

Thank you for listening to me.

I feel crappy because I know some people have lost long marriages and experienced situations with family involved and I can't begin to think of how much harder that is.

But for me, this is my life. He's my best friend. The future I thought I had. And it's so much shock to process in a week. I feel like the ground underneath me is so unstable and the world just feels weird.

I know I have had a lot of trauma. Not just being separated from him, my illness and this infidelity. I also experienced finding my son has a tumour (thankfully benign but it was VERY scary for few weeks) and we are meeting a surgeon tomorrow. I also pretty much lost a year's income due to Covid (hospitality business owner). And it feels like too much has crushed down on me at once.

All this is obviously all the more reason I feel lost that my partner betrayed me. I have spent a lot of time reading about all this and I still don't seem to understand cheating at all. I know it's something I could NEVER do to him.

posts: 51   ·   registered: Nov. 19th, 2020
id 8610752

 Kate88 (original poster Member #75884) posted at 2:00 AM on Friday, November 20th, 2020

I'd also like to add that yes, I think potentially he was planning on never telling me, and that hurts a lot. The dishonesty is very hard to cope with.

On the other hand, I know he had finished the affair before I found out which led to the AP finding me. He wasn't intending to just continue it because I wouldn't find out, so obviously the regret and guilt were there before I found out. Which helps.

posts: 51   ·   registered: Nov. 19th, 2020
id 8610753

 Kate88 (original poster Member #75884) posted at 2:13 AM on Friday, November 20th, 2020

One more thing I'd like to add, is that the relationship, which was always very good, was also plagued by an ambivalence from him. This was never a "big" issue as I am a very chilled person, but he was always deeply terrified of vulnerability.

I won't go into details, but he had a bad childhood and a bad first marriage and he always had thick armor around him. I don't think he really had any idea how to give (or receive) healthy love until this relationship.

He also has Aspergers, which means he can be less emotional than other people and it can give a person a level of coldness.

He never acted uncommitted, but I always knew he had huge fears of marriage, of getting too reliant on me or of being vulnerable to me. He was unwilling to really admit this, but I knew it and I knew it was part of the reason he took this job in the first place.

This situation, as horrifically painful as it is, has already made positive changes here. He's read the books on vulnerability and attachment that I gave him two years ago. He has started IC. He's been openly discussing with me what's going on in ways he never could before.

This situation seems to have cracked something open in him, and I do believe with my hand on my heart that there is room for growth from this for him and that he is willing to do it. Seeing me in this much pain has affected him a lot. I don't think he had honestly processed it.

I know there is possibility for a "new" start where he works through all this to a different relationship where he makes every decision based on "us" instead of "me" and I believe he will do that.

All these things don't erase what's happened though, which is why it's not simple for me to just move forward. Combined with that is the disgust, anger, betrayal, sadness. It is such a powerful cocktail of negative emotions that it seems so impossible to believe I can get over them.

I hope that changes, because deep down I think if I can get over this (truly get over it) and he can "do the work" then we might be really, really happy. It just seems very difficult to imagine it.

posts: 51   ·   registered: Nov. 19th, 2020
id 8610754

Mene ( Member #64377) posted at 2:34 AM on Friday, November 20th, 2020

No kids, not married. You’re lucky. Move on. That’s the advice most of us give here. Not worth it if children aren’t in the equation.

Life wasn’t meant to be fair...

posts: 826   ·   registered: Jul. 7th, 2018   ·   location: Cyberland
id 8610760

The1stWife ( Member #58832) posted at 2:58 AM on Friday, November 20th, 2020

You don’t have to decide right now about reconciliation.

Right now you need to get yourself some counseling. Some to emotionally support you.

The rest of the decisions will fall into place.

[This message edited by The1stWife at 3:09 AM, November 20th (Friday)]

Survived two affairs and brink of Divorce. Happily reconciled.

posts: 10517   ·   registered: May. 19th, 2017
id 8610764

cannotforgive ( Member #43367) posted at 11:22 AM on Friday, November 20th, 2020

Hi Kate,

First, I am really sorry about the pain you experience. It is one of the worst feelings in the world, to be betrayed by the person who you love and who made you feel safe.

I am married to a man who had childhood issues and had 'thick armor' as you say to protect him from vulnerability.He also had several failed long term relationships.

After D-day, he had 2 years of therapy, he improved a lot and became a lot happier with himself.

I gave him a chance for reconciliation and in the beginning I only stayed for the kids.

While we are at a good place now, 7 years from his despicable behaviour, I would not have done it if I did not have young children with him and if I was not financially dependent.

The relationship is forever changed and you never get the trust back.

I know you want to be back in the relationship as it were before, but that will never happen.

I know it is a Covid situation, however I strongly suggest you find a councilor( maybe for online sessions) for yourself to explore your feelings which will eventually enable you to decide whether you will give him a chance and reconcile.

As for your cheating boyfriend, he should find a place to live and start therapy himself. It will take years, be warned, for him to address the holes in his character that caused him to cheat.

I wish you well.

[This message edited by cannotforgive at 5:28 AM, November 20th (Friday)]


posts: 857   ·   registered: May. 8th, 2014   ·   location: Europe
id 8610849

Sofarsogood ( Member #71991) posted at 12:43 PM on Friday, November 20th, 2020

Like 1stWife stated, you really don't have to decide right now. Maybe work on yourself and what you need until he returns. When he is home, maybe what you feel about the whole situation will be clearer. First and foremost, protect yourself and realize you are worth having a safe partner. The suggestion for getting checked for STDs is because he has shown he is capable of trying to keep the infidelity from you. There is a possibility he has made this "mistake" before and kept it from you (especially if he has commitment issues). Please try to keep us in the loop, and I wish you the best!

posts: 272   ·   registered: Nov. 2nd, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8610858
Topic is Sleeping.
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