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Moving on, but still struggling (long read, but support is appreciated!!)


 HurtAndConfused2022 (original poster new member #82679) posted at 5:21 PM on Thursday, August 31st, 2023

My partner and I were together for a little under 3 years when we got engaged last October. I was so happy to be getting married to such an incredible man who shared the same values and culture as I did. However, mid December, I got a message from a random woman with screenshots of their conversations. Turns out last November he slept with his ex-girlfriend twice and was cheating on me. I was shocked because there was no indication of anything wrong. We never had any major fights, we shared the same values (or so I thought), same goals and aspirations, etc. I always did all I could to support him and his goals. I helped him with projects for work, with his classes for his Masters, and I even helped take care of his mother after she had a stroke when his siblings wouldn't step up. I did all that I could to be a loving, supportive partner. We talked about marriage and kids, both conversations initiated by him. He told all our friends about proposing and even got help picking out the perfect ring.

Initially, I tried to fight for us. In January, we agreed to take a break and do counseling separately. I did counseling for 5 months and he quit after 1.5 months. Even tho we agreed on a break, I officially broke up with him a few weeks later because I was dying on the inside, especially not knowing what he was doing. He didn't seem to realize how awful I felt. When we broke up in January, he immediately deleted me off fb and all other socials, and asked me not to 'blast him' and tell others what happened between us.

After a few months of no contact, we talked and we tried to remain friends because prior to this he was my best friend. Before this, we talked every day, spent the weekends together, taught language revitalization classes together (we are both Native American), etc. He was my first bf and I absolutely loved him- flaws and all. At that point, a small part of me hoped to reconcile. However, talking to him kept the wound open and there was no real accountability on his part because he still felt he had access to me. If I didn't respond to a message immediately, he would get mad and message back an "ok then" message. I couldn't heal, so we decided to just stop talking and no longer have contact with each other. At that point, he blocked me on messenger and fb (again) and that was the end of that.

A few weeks later ago, almost 8 months after I found out he cheated, I made a general social media post talking about my healing journey and the struggle this year has been. I didn't use his name and I didn't go into detail about what happened. Apparently my post got back to him (which I don't care about) but he messaged me mad/upset because "now people know what happened" and now he just feels even worse than he already did since our breakup (because he says he's really been struggling). I blocked his texts and he unblocked me on fb to message me there. I blocked him there too. Since then, he has completely deactivated fb (or is back on and has blocked me lol). A small part of me feels bad for talking about what happened on social media but I need to share my story to truly heal. BUT, I am also pissed that he thinks he has the nerve to dictate how I heal. He fucked up and wants me to feel bad for him...ugh.

We both live in small rural communities about an hour apart and have a large group of mutual friends (which I really haven't seen since the breakup and everything because idk what to tell them). I'm worried to see the woman he cheated on me with or even see him at this point because it all still hurts and I (probably foolishly) still have a small part of me that loves him. Next month is a big language conference in our state and I really want to go (because I love the language and culture-- we actually met at a similar conference) but I am also terrified to see him because idk how to act or what he will say/how he will act. But, I don't want to stop doing the things that I love because of him. I don't want to stop living my life because I am scared. I know that much but it is still really hard sometimes.

I'm dreading the anniversary of our engagement (which was 2 days before my birthday). October is already hard for me as I had 1 grandmother die on my b-day and the other died 3 days before my b-day. NOW, I have this shitty thing to add to that week of awfulness...

I know this post is all over the place, and idk what I'm even looking for here, but I just needed to share/vent. I have a good support system but I also don't want to always burden them with the same stuff consistently. I am doing better than I was a few months ago and I no longer cry all the time like the first few months. I try not to focus on it all the time and let it consume me, but some days are harder than others and some days I just wake up 'in a mood.' Today was one of those days (I am also filling out my request for work to attend that language conference so that doesn't help).

Do things get any easier? How do I trust anyone moving forward, especially another potential significant other (not that that is even going to be on my radar any time soon lol)? For those that decided to leave, how did you heal and move forward? Thank you...

ETA: We do not have any shared assets, property, no children, or anything else that binds us together.

[This message edited by HurtAndConfused2022 at 6:47 PM, Thursday, August 31st]

posts: 4   ·   registered: Jan. 5th, 2023
id 8806072

EllieKMAS ( member #68900) posted at 5:41 PM on Thursday, August 31st, 2023

First of all... (((H&C2022))) huge hugs! You are doing amazing!

Do things get any easier? How do I trust anyone moving forward, especially another potential significant other? For those that decided to leave, how did you heal and move forward? Thank you...

Yes, they do get easier, one day at a time. I remember early on it felt like I was stuck but every day I had no contact with him moved me further down the healing path. Stay your course and just know that even slow forward motion is still forward motion and that's the key point.

You learn to trust others by learning to trust YOU. Spend time with you, get to know who you are inside, learn how to set and hold healthy boundaries, learn how to clearly communicate your needs, and learn how to leave the table with your head high if respect is no longer being served. You're working on that right now by refusing to have contact with him and by refusing to give up the things you love because of him, but keep working on it so it becomes second nature. And for now, just enjoy developing your self-love and self-relationship, don't even worry about another SO. The work you do on you now will pay huge dividends later.

Also, he doesn't get to say anything to you about who you choose to share your truth with or how you choose to share it. If you wanted to say it explicitly on fb, you have EVERY right to that. if he doesn't like how people might perceive him if they knew he was a cheaty mcdouche, then he shoulda thought about that before he became a cheaty mcdouche - that is totally on him.

"No, it's you mothafucka, here's a list of reasons why." – Iliza Schlesinger

"The love that you lost isn't worth what it cost and in time you'll be glad that it's gone." – Linkin Park

posts: 3865   ·   registered: Nov. 22nd, 2018   ·   location: Louisiana
id 8806074

leafields ( Guide #63517) posted at 6:06 PM on Thursday, August 31st, 2023

idk what to tell them

For those you are close to, tell them as much as you want. For those you aren't that close to, you can say something like, "He preferred his women in quantity rather than quality." It's really not any of their business, so you don't have to say anything if you don't want to.

Healing from infidelity takes time. You're not even at a year, so it's still early days and your feelings are normal. I was about 3 years out before I felt more like my normal self.

Have fun at your convention. I hope your XWBF doesn't go. If he does, I hope the venue is large enough where you don't have to be near him.

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

posts: 2674   ·   registered: Apr. 21st, 2018   ·   location: Washington State
id 8806076

Bor9455 ( member #72628) posted at 6:13 PM on Thursday, August 31st, 2023

Sorry that you find yourself here with a reason to post. I will say that you are doing the right things by moving on from him. Block him, lose his number and never look back. Since you didn't mention it, I'm assuming that you didn't have any kids or shared property like a home that needs to be dealt with. It hurts a hell of a lot to have to walk way from a 3 year relationship, but if that is the most that it costs you to walk away, you can consider yourself fortunate that you found out now. I'm not trying to be dismissive of your pain, as I know this hurts and you are probably thinking, how could he point out that I am fortunate...but what I mean is the alternative is that you don't find out about his infidelity, you are married to him with a house and you have a hell of a lot more that you have to untangle with a guy who frankly cannot be bothered to do the work needed to reconcile. So again, as much as it hurts, and believe me, we know how much it hurts, we can tell you that there is light at the end of this dark tunnel and you will get over this.

Myself - BH & WH - Born 1985 Her - BW & WW - Born 1986

D-Day for WW's EA - October 2017D-Day no it turned PA - February 01, 2020

posts: 570   ·   registered: Jan. 21st, 2020   ·   location: Miami
id 8806079

BearlyBreathing ( member #55075) posted at 9:03 PM on Friday, September 1st, 2023

You’ve been heard.And everything you are feeling is normal. It takes time to heal, but it sounds like you are on your way.
Agree that you can tell whomever you want - tough luck to him. Actions have consequences, and this is one.

Go to that conference. Hold your head high. He doesn’t get to take that from you.

You can do this!!

Me: BS 55 (49 on d-day)Him: WH. 64. D-Day 8/15/2016 LTA. Kinda liking my new life :-)

**horrible typist, lots of edits to correct. :-/ **

posts: 5592   ·   registered: Sep. 10th, 2016   ·   location: Northern CA
id 8806299

SacredSoul33 ( member #83038) posted at 9:41 PM on Friday, September 1st, 2023

The author Anne Lamott said. "You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should have behaved better."

You go ahead and talk about your life and don't worry one bit about how it affects him. I hope you go to the language conference and truly enjoy yourself.

Let the world feel the weight of who you are and let them deal with it.

posts: 552   ·   registered: Mar. 10th, 2023
id 8806301

Blackbird25 ( member #82766) posted at 3:01 AM on Saturday, September 2nd, 2023

Hi hurtandconfused,
Just wanted to say - you have been heard!
I would imagine that the reason you were reluctant to put anything out there on SM is because a small part of you felt like there was a chance to reconcile. But honestly, you don’t owe him any consideration. How YOU deal with your pain and journey is up to you. Whatever you share with the universe is your business. He doesn’t want people to know what really happened between the two of you because the truth paints him in an unflattering light. Well - too fucking bad!! That’s the shitty consequences of being a cheating lying jerk. You shouldn’t be asked to keep his secrets. This is what HE did and how YOU heal is your prerogative, YOU get to decide what’s right for you. Not him. Not anyone else. Speak your truth friend. Your path of healing is yours and yours alone. Go live your life. Go to your language conference. Do not be afraid to run into him - you have every right to be there. If you see him, take a good, long hard look at him and tell yourself thanks; thanks for not marrying this man. He would have taken you down a road of misery - with lying, cheating. Go live your life. One day someone will walk into your life when the time is right. Right now things are fresh and raw. I’m also 8 months out from discovery that my husband was texting another woman. I’m so much better than I was on that first day - I’ve been on this site almost every day reading, interacting with others in the same boat. We are reconciling and we’re doing real good, but I won’t sugarcoat it and say it’s been perfect. I have good days and bad days. Right now I can honestly say I have more good days than bad days and I hope in time the triggers will lessen. It takes time - my WH had his first A in 2012. That was full on PA, as physical as it gets. I was in agony for such a long time. We reconciled - but it took a very long time, several years. And that was with both of us in intense therapy. This EA that he had in Dec 2022 re-traumatized me to the point I felt like I was back in 2012. Get a good therapist to help you through this. It’ll take time but you can do this! You CAN heal!!!

Me: BS Him: WHDDay#1: 5/2012 (EA 3mos, PA 1 month)DDay#2: 12/26/22 (EA, 1 wk), Reconciling and doing well

posts: 138   ·   registered: Jan. 23rd, 2023   ·   location: USA
id 8806321

Forks027 ( member #59996) posted at 5:18 AM on Sunday, September 3rd, 2023

idk what to tell them

"He preferred his women in quantity rather than quality."

Or better yet, simply tell them that you didn’t like his girlfriend, who ironically was his ex before you.

You’re right in that he doesn’t get to dictate you telling people the truth. He just doesn’t like how it makes him look. No doubt he likely told people some bs, watered down version or that you ended things mutually and amicably.

He feels worse? Good. He should. Because what he did was sh!tty. And that shouldn’t just be swept under the rug.

And anyone who doesn’t believe you or takes his side still after hearing yours are not worth keeping.

I say attend that conference with your head held high. You’re not the one who has anything to be ashamed of. Take a loyal friend or family member with you if need be.

[This message edited by Forks027 at 5:19 AM, Sunday, September 3rd]

posts: 518   ·   registered: Aug. 4th, 2017
id 8806386

 HurtAndConfused2022 (original poster new member #82679) posted at 5:21 PM on Tuesday, September 12th, 2023

Thank you all for the comments and support. Whenever I have a moment of sorrow I re-read this post and the comments and remind myself that I deserve better, will find better when the time is right, and that I will be ok. I am going to the language conference, I registered and booked my hotel room. My coworker, who is a sweet elderly woman that I have known for the last 5 years and confided in during all this, is coming as well and she assured me that she will be with me the entire time. So, with my grandma figure next to me I am going to do what I love. If I see him, I hope he thinks about how much he fucked up and ruined something good. Things are still hard sometimes, which I know is natural, but reading all your comments and knowing that there is a community of strong people who have survived this helps soooo much. Thank you all. I will update again after the conference!

posts: 4   ·   registered: Jan. 5th, 2023
id 8807487

leafields ( Guide #63517) posted at 5:58 PM on Tuesday, September 12th, 2023

So glad you decided to go and that you have your coworker to help you through. Please post an update when you get back.

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

posts: 2674   ·   registered: Apr. 21st, 2018   ·   location: Washington State
id 8807494
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