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Newest Member: Lissa

Reconciliation :
GF cheated/assaulted while blackout drunk, trouble letting it go.


This0is0Fine ( member #72277) posted at 6:27 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

It's a grey area. But my answer to you is "I have a boyfriend" is a green light to keep going. "I'm not interested" or "fuck off" is how you stop an advance. Maybe too many women think that is worse, or have a hard time being direct. Idk. I'm just telling you this detail feels important to me, even if everything after lacked consent.

Love is not a measure of capacity for pain you are willing to endure for your partner.

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id 8779632

Darkness Falls ( member #27879) posted at 6:42 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

In my opinion, this was not "cheating" but it also was not "sexual assault." If this guy is being honest about stopping when she was uncomfortable, then it was a case of things going too far when being wasted but, well, stopping when it was clear she did not want to continue. That’s not sexual assault in my view.

I largely agree with GoldenR that people have the responsibility to not put themselves in dangerous situations. If you want to drink so much you get completely trashed, then the onus is on you to make sure you’re in a safe place in the presence of people you trust who can look out for you. (Sidenote: I personally think getting that drunk in public is immature, but it’s none of my business what others do.)

I think your girlfriend needs to lay off so much alcohol, or perhaps ANY, if she goes out. That way she’s fully in control of her faculties and this kind of thing won’t happen.

WS - remarried to BH but not in R

D-day 2010

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GrayShades ( member #59967) posted at 7:00 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

The OP writes

So many people say "once a cheater, always a cheater" - and maybe that is true for someone who intentionally lies, decieves, and cheats. But what about a situation like this.. black-out drunk..immediate confession.. no sex... could this not be viewed as a mistake, never to be repeated? Or perhaps this is just flat out sexual assault?

Do you agree that this encounter does not sound 100% consensual?

I'm having trouble letting it go, but it feels wrong to end an otherwise great relationship with a woman I am in love over some opportunistic asshole.

Yes, the drinking sounds like a problem, one that she's already addressing in a serious way according to your account. Regardless of whether she's in any way culpable for putting herself into this situation (and I don't think she was, but that's the essence of the debate above), she did not consent to what happened with this 'opportunistic asshole.' Ergo, the "once a cheater" truism above, whether actually true or not, doesn't apply.

Me: 50 on Dday
WH: Turned 48 the day before Dday
Dday: 05/16/17 One son, now young adult.

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HellFire ( member #59305) posted at 7:06 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

It's her fault she got drunk. It's his fault he assaulted her.

I find it fascinating that anyone believes everything this man told her about what happened. He knew she had a boyfriend. He'd known her for years, therefore, he knew. Let's say for a moment this was consensual. That would make him the OM. Since when do we believe that APs don't lie,and are suddenly pillars of honesty?

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GoldenR ( member #54778) posted at 7:20 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

I agree with you there, Hellfire!

I think it's very probable that they had full on PIV sex.

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 rothman9499 (original poster new member #82959) posted at 7:31 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

I don't believe they had full on sex because my GF said when she woke up it didn't feel like she had had sex. I feel that typically women are in-tune enough with their bodies to know if they were penetrated the night before, particularly if it was un consensual.

Also, I feel like if he was going to lie about it, there would be a lot easier lies he could have told.

But then again, it is possible.

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Tanner ( Guide #72235) posted at 8:05 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

My W had a similar situation out of town at a conference. Her friends and a vendor were drinking at the hotel bar. They moved the party upstairs to his room. She passed out in his room and woke up to everyone gone and him on top trying to remove her clothes. She stopped him, started crying and he helped her back to her room.

When I found out, I was pissed and insisted that he assaulted her. She insisted he didn’t and held to that. I have been very conflicted on this because I feel like she blames herself for flirting with him earlier.

Another thing is these so called "friends" did not protect her. Left her alone passed out with that man.

Dday Sept 7 2019 doing well in R BH M 32 years

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 rothman9499 (original poster new member #82959) posted at 9:23 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

Should I encourage my girlfriend to think about this more?

I feel bad to say to her: "Hey, maybe you were raped?"

Won't that cause her more distress when she is in a process of healing?

If she believes whole heartedly that they didn't have sex, and he has said the same, should I not just let her hold onto that belief? There is no way of knowing 100% for sure, and I don't feel like its my place to tell her what did or did not happen to her body.

In this case, maybe ignorance is bliss?

And for the record, she did get tested - all clear.

[This message edited by rothman9499 at 9:24 PM, Monday, February 27th]

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Luna10 ( member #60888) posted at 10:19 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

Rothman this is an infidelity forum and whilst some users may have sadly experienced sexual assault, a lot of users will give advice through the lens of infidelity.

I think your GF would benefit from some counselling sessions with a therapist that has some experience with sexual assault.

Personally I have no experience with assault although as I previously said, I’ve made my own stupid decisions in my youth which now, from a more mature perspective, give me the chills knowing that each could have ended completely differently, hence why I feel the need to stand up for your GF.

Most of us make those bad decisions such as over drinking, walking alone on our way home at night, going to parties with strangers, because we are young and we believe we are indestructible or that we are in a safe environment (for example your GF probably thought she’s safe in the "hands" of an old friend she knew for years).

Being attacked when we are vulnerable bears no responsibility on ourselves, hence why on this forum we make sure that we tell every betrayed person that nothing they did deserved being cheated on, not even if their marriage was sexless for years for example. Because being attacked emotionally or physically is never ok. Consent is simple, it requires the person consenting clearing saying "yes". It doesn’t mean not saying "no". It doesn’t mean keeping quiet. There is a lot of amazing resource out there to educate our kids, I know I hammered this down with my son.

I think your girlfriend would benefit hearing from you that you do not label what happened to her as cheating as she is already blaming herself. I also think that she would benefit hearing from you that you believe she was assaulted and she should see a therapist.

Most assault victims (regardless if sex happened or not) are too embarrassed to talk about it so her reaction is normal.

Good luck and I wish you and your GF well.

Dday - 27th September 2017

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grubs ( member #77165) posted at 10:31 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

What you describe was rape by most definitions under the law. There was no way she could have consented if she was as drunk as it seems. It appears she has realized that drinking is a problem for her. That's good as removing the drinking goes a long way to making her a safe partner and generally safer from being assaulted again. I would definitely express that she should talk with an IC to help her process this.

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HellFire ( member #59305) posted at 10:35 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

I agree with everything Luna said.

She needs to face this. Now. If she puts tries to pretend it didn't happen,it will eat at her. It will affect her, in every way. It's like an infection. You can pretend you're not sick,but it will grow,and it will hurt you more.

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Unhinged ( member #47977) posted at 11:11 PM on Monday, February 27th, 2023

Rothman, I believe, from what you've written, that your girlfriend neither cheated nor was sexually assaulted. It seems a common story. They've known each other for a while, he likes her, and tried his best to seduce her, while she was drunk, and failed.

That being said, I'd imagine it still hurts just the same and creates similar doubts.

What's important here is that she has recognized her issues and is taking steps to deal with them.

Married 2005
D-Day April, 2015
Divorced May, 2022

"The Universe is not short on wake-up calls. We're just quick to hit the snooze button." -Brene Brown

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Bigger ( Attaché #8354) posted at 12:53 AM on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

There are so many angles on this thread.
I worked in law enforcement way back when Simple Minds were the hottest band and one of the areas I specialized in was handling domestic abuse and sexual assault. Even back then we had stopped blaming the victims. A poster compared what happened to walking about flashing cash, well… I wonder what the "cash" was in this scenario? Cleavage? A short hemline? What "valuable" was she carelessly displaying? Heck! Even back then we didn’t ask sexual assault victims if they flashed cleavage or had been sexy or provocative or why they were surprised at having been raped in that part of town.
And what would be the sexual-assault equivalent to what that poster seems to consider an especially risky area? Why did he mention THAT historically African-American neighborhood that actually has a relatively low crime-rate?
The days of victim-blaming and minimizing the trauma of sexual assault are over and have been for quite some time.

First of all friend – It’s your call if you want to end this relationship or not. Nobody is forcing you to be there, nobody is forcing you out. The fact you posted on this site and in this forum does indicate you do want to save your relationship. It’s definitely doable, but remember it’s a lot of work.

Was this rape?
Heck… I’m not sure. Based on what has been shared she had enough cognitive ability to go with the OM, take part in the foreplay and so on. It also sounds like the OM stopped once she asked him to or he sensed she wasn’t into it. I have a feeling this would definitely not meet the standards of legal rape, and frankly I don’t think this is sexual assault from the OM. The main reasoning being that BASED ON WHAT IS SHARED the OM didn’t pile her with booze, didn’t pursue beyond what response he got at each stage and… the clincher… quit before it went beyond what might be considered foreplay before the grand finale. For all we know they were both pretty drunk, and both participants up to when (seemingly) he quit. What is missing is that at no point until the oral sex does it sound like she gave indications she didn’t want to go further.

I think her shock might be in that she went that far, knowing it was wrong or risking your relationship. She feels assaulted, but that might be more a sense of allowing herself to go there, rather than this particular man did what he did.
I venture she might be shocked at how close she was to being raped or how close she was to have been a drunk but possibly willing participant in sex.
I’m not minimizing her shock or feeling of assault or abuse, but I think it might be more based on being so shocked that she reached that state.

Look – Anyone of us should have the right to get shit-faced, passed out drunk and not be raped, or beaten or robbed or whatever. There is no doubt on that issue. However – if your GF has a pattern of blacking out then there is the very strong possibility she has an alcohol-issue.
We see alcoholism as the uncle that always pisses himself at family-dinners. Well… one definition is simply not controlling your intake, another is when you drink despite knowing it’s getting you into a bad place. It’s not the quantity or the frequency – but the actions and effects. If your GF drinks regularly to a stage where she loses control of herself… she has a drinking issue.
I repeat: Anyone of us should have the right to get shit-faced, passed out drunk and not be raped, or beaten or robbed or whatever.
But maybe she needs to look into her drinking. If she wants this relationship then maybe a 6 month sobriety period for her would be in order, and then work from there.

"If, therefore, any be unhappy, let him remember that he is unhappy by reason of himself alone." Epictetus

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BluerThanBlue ( member #74855) posted at 1:46 AM on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

The problem of casual sex while drunk is that gaging consent is an extremely tricky thing. If they were both wasted, then who is to blame? The one with lower BAC? Or is it always the guy simply because he’s male?

If he was stone cold sober and she was unconscious, then he’s obviously at fault, but that doesn’t appear to be the case here. Just because she blacked out doesn’t mean that she was incapable of carrying on a conversation or sounded incoherent. If his description is accurate, then he thought she was into him and then he stopped after she expressed reservations.

Unfortunately, both parties here are unreliable narrators. If they were both drunk, then neither one has a sound recollection of events. Also, they both have incentives to lie— your gf wants to save your relationship and the guy wants to save his ass.

The fact that she frequently drinks to the point of blacking out is very troublesome behavior and doesn’t bode well for the future. She will need to get her drinking under control or stop drinking altogether whether or not your relationship survives.

I think only time will tell whether this will serve as the wake-up call she desperately needs or whether she will continue (or escalate) to get intoxicated and behave recklessly.

Only you can decide whether you want to give her a chance.

[This message edited by BluerThanBlue at 1:56 AM, Tuesday, February 28th]

BW, 40s

Divorced WH in 2015; now happily remarried

I edit my comments a lot for spelling, grammar, typos, etc.

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GoldenR ( member #54778) posted at 5:25 AM on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

Bigger -

Yep, you're right. Everyone should do the most risky things they can think of that put themselves in danger bc you know what? Nothing bad should happen and if it does, it's not their fault.

And you got me on the Harlem thing. It's never been associated with having a high crime rate. I'm a racist. You've exposed me. Oh whatever shall I do now?

[This message edited by GoldenR at 5:30 AM, Tuesday, February 28th]

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leafields ( Guide #63517) posted at 5:59 AM on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

GoldenR, what can help Rothman through the pain?

BW M 34years, Dday 1: March 2018, Dday 2: August 2019, D final 2/25/21

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GoldenR ( member #54778) posted at 7:34 AM on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

GoldenR, what can help Rothman through the pain?

Since he has decided to stay with her, he probably needs therapy bc she was a victim of SA. She didn't cheat. And regardless of these 2 facts he's having a hard time accepting that she was with someone else sexually.

He can also use the therapy to help him forgive her for being irresponsible bc it sounds like he's having a tough time dealing with the decisions she made that night while she was in no shape to make those decisions.

[This message edited by GoldenR at 7:36 AM, Tuesday, February 28th]

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slamsunk ( member #79303) posted at 1:20 PM on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

I think I differ from the majority here. I don’t think this is a black and white case of rape or sexual assault unless blackout drunk means she was laying there unconsciously with fleeting memories of being acted upon. Which doesn’t sound like what happened. Especially if GF thinks she may have performed oral on him. Unless she was forced- again- doesn’t sound like what happened.

When she said she wanted to go to her bed, he stopped. And I think he probably didn’t want to respond to text because he knows he is a jerk for hooking up with someone in a relationship.

I can only speak from my experience which involved weekend drinking when I was much younger… at the bars… at parties, etc. On rare occasion I’d forget portions of the evening due to my level of intoxication, like how I got from point A to point B or having my friends tell me something I said or did which I had no memory of. (Not proud of any of this btw, just giving a background) My actions and words were still mine to own, drunk or not.

People exhibit poor judgement under the influence of alcohol. Alcohol lowers inhibition, makes people flirtier than normal, more receptive to flirtation than normal. I think it’s worth considering that GF was willingly engaging with this guy in a drunken state but still with it enough to say stop when things got to a certain point/she had a brief moment of clarity.

If she was able to speak, move, walk around etc, how is the guy supposed to know that she doesn’t want to engage in said activities until she says no? Maybe she was being flirtatious and giving the impression she was interested. I know I have acted like this when I was drunk, only wonder what the hell I was thinking the next day.

I’m not saying the guy isn’t a creep, since he knew she was in relationship and knew she was drunk with lower inhibitions. But its worth considering there is a possibility that GF was giving signals (maybe/probably thanks to alcohol) that she was interested or receptive to this guys come-on, and why would he turn her down until she says stop. and when things got out of hand, she stopped it before it went any further.

I do understand the potential is there for things to have happened that she didn’t consent since she can’t remember (which would be wrong, no question), but I think if she was conscious enough to be engaging in any way (whether she remembers of not) I don’t think of her as just a victim. How would this other guy know she would regret this the next day? or that she was going to have blacked out those portions of the evening?

Maybe an unpopular opinion but these are my thoughts about OP situation.

OP best wishes as you sort through things. I think if she is willing to make some changes it’s possible to work things out but definitely needs to address the drinking.

BS- me 44, WH- 46, 2 year EA (long distance, sexual) Dday Spring 2021, TT for 3 months after

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id 8779767

GrayShades ( member #59967) posted at 3:50 PM on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

GoldenR wrote

Yep, you're right. Everyone should do the most risky things they can think of that put themselves in danger bc you know what? Nothing bad should happen and if it does, it's not their fault.

And you got me on the Harlem thing. It's never been associated with having a high crime rate. I'm a racist. You've exposed me. Oh whatever shall I do now?

If your hypothetical cash-flasher was robbed, they exhibited poor judgment but that wouldn't stop their robbers from being legally culpable. That's red herring #1. It doesn't matter if the other guy was in no shape to consent either, nor if he assaulted her and bears some/all of the responsibility - red herring #2. The central issue is whether the GF chose to engage sexually with someone else. She was in no shape to consent, ergo, I wouldn't call what happened cheating. She did, however, have a habit of drinking heavily, putting herself at risk for all manner of things. After these events, she quit drinking completely. The OP's GF used poor judgment in getting so wasted, she's admitted that, quit drinking, and let's not forget, 'confessed' immediately. All are good signs of using better judgment in the future.

t/j on Harlem. It's stereotyped as a risky place, and long has been, likely because of its centrality in Black culture during the 20th century. The South, including the rural South, has historically had the highest rates of violence in the nation, outpacing NYC in general and Harlem in particular (even historically). What should you do? Maybe reflect on why you used that as your example instead of, say, your home state of Texas. I'm not saying you're racist. I say that as a native rural Southerner who grew up with that same stereotype about NYC and Harlem and now know better.

Me: 50 on Dday
WH: Turned 48 the day before Dday
Dday: 05/16/17 One son, now young adult.

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id 8779789

GoldenR ( member #54778) posted at 3:58 PM on Tuesday, February 28th, 2023

The reason I used it is bc as you said, it has in the past historically had some of the highest rates of crime.

Had I said Ft Worth or Austin or San Antonio, it wouldn't have struck the same meaning. In my hometown there's an area known as "Under The Hill" with an exceptionally high rate of crime. Unfortunately no one would have known what that was either.

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