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Would you admit to an early indiscretion?

(88 Posts)
Schoolnight Sat 02-Nov-13 14:48:54

I started dating a man about six months ago. It was nice, we laughed, had things in common, he's very warm and made me feel good. But I never had that moment of thinking he was someone I really wanted to be with and he lacks a couple of points I'd always considered essential in a partner. So when someone else asked me out I started seeing them too.

Things have progressed with my boyfriend but the second man was always more of a bit on the side. The issue is we slept together a few times, mainly before me and my boyfriend were "exclusive" but once afterwards. The issue is now I realise my friends were right and my boyfriend was "a grower". I'm still not sure we'll end up happily ever after etc, but I love him and want to allow myself to see what happens.

But he knows nothing of this other man and thinks I was totally single from day one. Part of me thinks this is fine and often happens but I'm aware that he doesn't have the full picture so is basing his feelings on an inaccurate picture of me.

Should I tell him so he can make an informed decision, or keep quiet and see it as all water under the bridge which won't happen again?

scaevola Sat 02-Nov-13 19:08:23

I think it's the straddling of the 'exclusivity' chat that could be the big problem. And that a number of other people know about Second Man.

What value you place on keeping secrets from a partner is a personal call based on your own ethics and morals. But there are pragmatic issues here too, because a third party could spill the beans (inadvertently or deliberately) at any time. And that would be worse.

brokenhearted55a Sat 02-Nov-13 19:22:13

There was only one shag post exclusivity.
I still say i would rather not be told.

Blondeorbrunette Sat 02-Nov-13 19:26:59

Yes I would tell him. Shortly after I met my husband he arranged to spend a weekend with a girl he had met 3 months before me. To cut a long story short he shagged her. Had I known this at the time I would have walked away. I told him he should have been honest with me at the time and allowed me to make an informed decision on my future.

You did something shitty on your partner and to not tell IMO is just plain selfish. You know deep down he should know. If it comes out after years together and he may feel like the relationship was a lie.

JoinYourPlayfellows Sat 02-Nov-13 19:46:19

"I know he loves me, I know I make him happy, so why make him unhappy and wonder what he did wrong just in the name of honesty?"

Well, he doesn't really know you, does he?

He's only happy because he thinks you are a different kind of person from the one you actually are.

It's amusing that you think that finding out that you are a liar and a cheat would make him wonder what he did wrong.

He might be very clear about the fact that the thing he did wrong was ever bothering to get serious about you.

If YOU loved HIM, you would want what's best for him.

And that is a relationship based on honesty.

You are taking away his option not to be with someone who cheated on him. Because now you've decided he's actually "a grower".

I would HATE to be with someone who used me the way you are using him.

"Oh, he's just some guy. I'll tell him we're exclusive, even though I don't mean it."

"Oh actually, he's not that bad. Oh well, better lie to him for the rest of his life so I can get what I want."

Marylou2 Sat 02-Nov-13 19:50:35

No. Just forget it! Don't beat yourself up over it. Life's too short.

Schoolnight Sat 02-Nov-13 19:57:01

Thanks for all the responses. I have decided I am firmly in the don't tell camp. Those arguing for a big reveal some to have a more black and white view of relationships which just doesn't tally with my own morality.

The thing is, we can never know how dodgy the foundations of a relationship are. Someone could be nursing a broken heart over some unrequited love or have chosen you as default because other options blew them off. And then it worked. Or they could have finally decided to get serious after watching all their mates settle down. And you happen to be the first person they liked who came along after that. A friend just got married to a woman who I know for a fact had resolved to find the man she would marry at the point they met, and a few weeks before had been persuing another friend of mine. We'd probably all be mortified if we knew what had really gone through people's minds at the outset. My boyfriend never know that he "won" against this other guy, but he did. Should I also tell him about the other guys who have asked me out since so he knows I'm making an active choice to be with him??

And joinyourplayfellows, it's been six months, of course he doesn't know the real me. It's just you choose to put the most emphasis on this missing fact against all the others.

Broken55 I'm not sure what made me change my mind. Possibly consistently excellent shagging. Seriously, the thing that troubled me at first was he wasn't my usual "type", who tend to be high flyers. Then I realised that those qualities don't necessarily translate into a good relationship and it was refreshing to be in a relationship that just made me feel good.

maypoledancer Sat 02-Nov-13 19:59:54

Very aggressive Join.

You are projecting massively. She's not a liar and a cheat. She was seeing someone else at the beginning, she didn't know whether either of the guys she was dating would turn into a serious relationship. She hasn't told him about it because it doesn't seem relevant to what they have now, because it's a new relationship and because there is no need.

Supposing she told him 'the whole truth'. Said, I wasn't sure about you at the beginning. It's hurtful and doesn't reflect how she feels now.

You accuse her of 'using' him. WTF? She's fallen in love with him. How is he being 'used'? She is considering making a future with him.

Lots of people do things at the beginning of a relationship they wouldn't consider once things become established. Condemning the OP as a callous, using 'cheat' is so unreasonable.

It's hard not to imagine there is a sad backstory behind your comments.

You would 'HATE' to be with someone like the OP. I wouldn't. I wouldn't want the confession, I would rather focus on the future.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 02-Nov-13 20:00:11

Good call. smile

maypoledancer Sat 02-Nov-13 20:01:50

Ah, x-posted with OP, who has made a good decision, and presents her rationale very reasonably.

Hope things continue to go well OP, and enjoy the 'consistently excellent shagging'. wink

Schoolnight Sat 02-Nov-13 20:05:25

Thanks. smile

Blondeorbrunette Sat 02-Nov-13 20:53:05

He deserves better and if I'm honest he deserves someone who is going to treat him with respect and will put him first.

Saying that m, you have made your choice and hopefully it will all work out.

WarmFuzzyFuture Sat 02-Nov-13 21:10:35

Oh for goodness sake!

There is absolutely nothing to tell.

I hope it is everything you want it to be.

Good luck and best wishes x

arsenaltilidie Sat 02-Nov-13 21:48:29

You had sex with someone AFTER you discussed exclusivity.

However the main issue is I'm still not sure we'll end up happily ever after etc

It sounds like he isn't the one.

In a few years time you'll come here saying you are not attracted to your partner, the spark has never been really there etc.

Mattissy Sat 02-Nov-13 22:32:59

I think you've made the right decision. Now you've made that choice and decided he's the one you want then it stands a decent chance of working, sometimes the best relationships come from 'growers'. Now you've done that though it needs to be 100% exclusive! Good luck x

Lazyjaney Sat 02-Nov-13 23:29:51

Lots of projection on here!

Keep quiet OP, nothing would be gained and possibly a lot lost.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sun 03-Nov-13 06:00:27

I love these references to 'the one' - as if that's the only acceptable outcome. smile Why can't the OP just enjoy a bit of prolongued dating? Why is everyone so keen to get her down the aisle?

cupcake78 Sun 03-Nov-13 06:03:36

Nothing good can come from telling him so don't do it!

JoinYourPlayfellows Sun 03-Nov-13 07:26:50

"My boyfriend never know that he "won" against this other guy, but he did."

Some prize hmm

I pity him, you sound like a total user, but nice that you've decided that even though he's not rich enough for you he'll do because he's good at sex.

Hopefully he'll realise on his own how much you look down on him and how much better than him you think you are.

maleview70 Sun 03-Nov-13 07:41:56

My wife recently admitted that after we started seeing each properly, after about a month she spent the night with a bloke she had also sort of being seeing when she worked in Scotland. I knew of him and always suspected so wasn't bothered (and as I had slept with my ex gf during that month too then I couldn't really be could I!)

Best kept quiet in my opinion!

Loopyloulu Sun 03-Nov-13 08:16:06

Don't tell.

Who's to know he wasn't seeing other women at the same time?

It's in the past. Stop feeling guilty.

Twunk Sun 03-Nov-13 08:24:15

I wouldn't tell either. And neither would I want to be told. Good call OP.

Mattissy Sun 03-Nov-13 09:39:07

Cogito, I think the references to 'the one' are more to do with him being the one out of the two them that she wants to remain seeing exclusively, rather than the one she wants to marry. Sheesh, you're the only one that's mentioned marriage, lol! Far from my mind I can tell you!

brokenhearted55a Sun 03-Nov-13 09:49:51

Although having said that, my friends boyfriend had sex on holiday after they had been dating a little while.

he was on an all boys holiday. it came out as the guys knew he'd done it. she nearly dumped him all that time (nearly 2 years later).

He might find out from friends who know......

Schoolnight Sun 03-Nov-13 10:25:56

Well some people have hinted at marriage and "the one" - Arsenal who seems to think that the inevitable next step is complaining on here about my loveless relationship in a few years time.

Playfellows I'm afraid it's simply impossible to read your posts without agreeing with LazyJaney.

Friends always a risk, but the collective weight of secrets we hold for each other would sink the MN servers.

Fairenuff Sun 03-Nov-13 10:38:04

She is a 'liar and a cheat' though Maypole. Which is fine if she is happy with that, it's her life. But she did cheat on him after they had agreed to be exclusive. And she is lying by omission.

OP why did you call it an 'indiscretion'? Do you feel the need to minimise what you did. I think offloading on mn helps to relieve the guilt because you can't talk about it in rl. We have served our purpose now.

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