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I want advice from a cheater!?!(41 Posts)
I have posted on here a gazillion times. At the moment I'm really struggling with life. Years ago I cheated on my partner,I had an emotional affair & met this other guy (no sex involved)...I ended it with him when I realised what an idiot I had been. Last October I told my partner the truth as I couldn't live with the guilt. To this day I'm still no better, he says I'm worse if anything since I told him as I can't go for romantic meals, a night out (without me arranging it) panics me & the thought of a night away or holiday panics me like it used to. Im not sure if it was cause when he didn't know I could brush it off more if I felt nervous etc now he knows I feel awful for still panicking etc? Just wanted to know how you deal with the guilt. When we get on its amazing but the slightest thing can throw me off track & bring it back up again. I can't go on much more like this. If we were to split up yes it may take away some anxiety but I would never ever forgive myself x
I'm not sure I can really help but can tell you a little of my history.
In the relationships where I cheated, they all failed. It wasn't guilt related, it was either because it was always going to fail or I never fixed what compelled me to cheat in the first place. I never really had an affair as such and was never emotionally attached to the individual. Interestingly, the last time I cheated was when I was with my emotionally abusive ex. I just needed to feel wanted and loved. Sad really.
It sounds as if you need to forgive yourself. Have you explored why you had the affair? What was happening in your life at the time?
I know I'm just finding it hArd, sometimes I can go days,weeks without thinking about it but usually when it comes to just he two of us going our or a meal etc it throws me completely & I don't understand why. Although in the house or busy weekends I can sit with him or whatever without a worry in the world. I had just had a year maternity off, my partner was always out,I had a lot of people in my ear about it moaning &when I went back to work & someone showed me some attention, I ran away with it before I knew it. I don't have any regrets in life bar this x
Turn back i too had an affair after yrs at home never seeing my "DH".It was me who started it out of curiousity and a feeling my dh and i werent compatible.It lasted 2 yrs and when it ended i didnt really feel guilty to dh.I did feel guilt to the dcs and missed times with them and any upset caused.Perhaps the fact i didnt feel guilty speaks volumes for the fact we were incompatable or perhaps the guilt doesnt serve a purpose.We ve had some dreadful yrs recently however i know an affair isnt the answer.
Did you confess the truth? The problem is, yes it wasn't perfect but I think I had a bit of PND depressing after my son which didn't help either. I just hope in years to come I will forgive myself x
So you feel guilty when you and your partner should be feeling close and happy? Do you feel you deserve to be happy and relaxed in each other's company?
You know you are not going to achieve anything by berating yourself all these years later. You told your DP and he moved on? Is it ever brought up? Are you worried you may cheat again?
If you have more general anxiety, perhaps some CBT may help to challenge negative thinking.
I'm not an expert, but I've dealt with some crap over the years. I'm not sure your problem will necessarily disappear over time on it's own and you need to tackle it head on.
Have I got this right - this happened years ago and you've told your DH and he's forgiven you ? It's just you that can't get over it?
I'm sorry, I think your being a bit obsessive - especially when you talk about panic attacks and not bing able to stop thinking about it. Maybe your EA is the focus of these feeling rather than th cause of them if you see what I mean?
On the other hand I'm no psychiatrist so hat do I know?[smily face]
...Sigh.... being not bing. What not hat. not [smiley face]
I do find I don't deserve to be happy, last Christmas I struggled massively,cried all Christmas eve but was okay on the day as it was a busy day. My partner never ever brings it up, it's only brought up when I have a slight wobble. I can hand on heart say I would never ever do it again, it's very out of character for me if you knew me. I have had councEling & mindfulness which I do need to keep practising I start cbt on Monday so I hope & pray it helps. I don't want to throw it all away over this x
How about you stop focusing on yourself and start focusing on how to rebuild a trusting relatinship with your partner?
Because the position you are forcing him into it having to deal with his feelings over being betrayed and deal with your emotions over it as well.
I assume he wants to go on holidays and nice trips away? Why do you get to take that away from him as well because of how you feel?
It sounds like it is all about you, you don't mention much at all about your patners feelings...have you even considered them?
Sorry but when you put all your energy into obsessing about your own feelings, even if they are feelings of regret, guilt and so on, then you are still prioritising your own emotional landscape over his.
yes i told my dh while it was happening it was more his descision to stay as a family.I usually feel guilty for most things in life and put others first so this is hugely out of character.Dont let guilt ruin your chance to move on we all make mistakes its how we deal with them that counts.
I don't think your anxiety is about your infidelity at all. I think it stems from something else entirely, but it suits you to blame yourself for it.
I would recommend a visit to a gp and some counselling of some type. You cannot go on like this. I would also wonder why you stay with your partner when you are so unhappy.
I agree with butterlyg the emotional affair and the issues around it are very significant . However the real problems lie much deeper, (somewhere in your personal history) understand these and you will be able to understand yourself and your actions more clearly.
Arrange counselling talk to a non judgemental person about your past, your feelings and other significant relationships in your life from childhood to now, this will give you a clearer understanding of yourself, the here and now, and the ways forward. Be kind to yourself you are clearly a good and thoughtful person.
Have you looked up depression it's signs and symptoms?
Thank you for all your messages. I most define try need to think of my partners feelings more. I'm not unhappy with him Im unhappy with myself. I start cbt on Monday so I pray I feel it helps. Be daft to throw it all away over nothing x
These ruminating thoughts and feelings of being unworthy do sound like depression to me.
If you are happy with your relationship etc and these feelings revolve more around how you feel about yourself I think you should consider a visit to the GP and be honest about how your feeling and the effects on your life.
Sorry just saw your update. Good Luck, I think this will help you no end.
I've read all your threads . You seem to regularly minimize and state this was an emotional affair and make references to a little kiss. Apologies if I am mistaken but I'm sure I read it was much more than that. If that's correct it means it was a physical affair not an emotional one.
It's extremely unusual to confess to cheating years after the event. And to choose to do this on holiday is very questionable. You say guilt drove you to confess , but then you proceeded to lie when he asked you particular questions. What did you hope to achieve by your half confession ? You knew there was a chance he would end your relationship. On some level , did you want him to ? Because there are other ways to deal with guilt.
You say you feel guilt. In your husbands shoes I'd struggle to believe this. Guilt and remorse drives most people to be better , to help heal the one you've hurt. Guilt means being honest. It means answering questions honestly and committing to transparency. It means you offer apologies and reassurance, and that you recognize the emotional devastation you've caused. I notice you blame your husband being out a lot for your infidelity, along with people moaning. That's not guilt and its not being honest or taking responsibility.
Your guilt isn't driving you to be a better wife. It's not driving you to be considerate to your husbands feelings. It's not driven you to answer truthfully the questions your husband has asked you. It's not driving you to spend quality time or to consider the emotional damage you've caused. You hardly ever mention his feelings. It's interesting that it IS becoming a reason to avoid spending time with him , to avoid romantic nights out or holidays. I also note on some of your threads you wonder if you should split up.
Your husband has put up with an awful lot. I agree with Norest that you are still putting yourself first. It's all about you.
DorrisDazzler - Thanks for your post. I have now answered every little detail,I didn't at first & I'm not sure why to be honest. But I've answered everything truthfully, in some cases maybe too much. I have started to realise I think about myself quite a lot to be honest & maybe didn't realise so much. I only wonder if it's normal to still feel anxious with him about certain situations that is all? I guess I just thought once I said it would all be hunky dory. It may not come across I do but I do take full responsibility for what I did & it's something I'll always regret. X
And I only say about splitting up, not because I want to but I also don't want it to go on like this its not fair on him x
I guess I thought once I said it would all be hunky dory.
Yes , I believe you did think that. And it's skewed thinking. It seems to have become your husbands job to make you feel better. That's selfish and unfair. What are you doing in terms of repairing your marriage ? What are you doing to make your husband feel loved ? I really think you need to stop the obsession with yourself. I find your last statement really off to be honest. You don't want to split up but you don't want to carry on like this because it's not fair on him. Do you actually say this to him ?
It doesn't sound like You are doing even the minimum things required to repair your marriage. I say this as someone who cheated. The focus is still on you and you seem determined to keep it there. If you took full responsibility you would not have blamed your husband being out a lot or people moaning for your affair.
I can tell you Op , I was a very selfish person my entire life, and it took a lot of honesty and growing up to do before I saw that. It wasn't easy.
I can't help but feel that all this hair shirting is an attempt to make your partner feel he has to comfort and reassure you (so he can't be frank or angry or truthful or anything else he might need for HIS pain).
If you're not going to use your apparently unbearable guilt to work out what this all means to the person you cheated on, and instead use it to bang on endlessly about how much pain YOU feel, and ask MNers for advice on how to cure YOU, and ruin what should be healing times with your husband because they have become all about YOUR pain, then your guilt is pointless and self serving. Don't be surprised, guilt often is pointless and self serving if you don't do anything useful with it.
I read this as you endlessly berating yourself to prevent anyone else from berating you. Ultimately, this guilt will serve no purpose because it's all about you. And if your relationship fails as a result, it'll just become more of the same, but worse.
Dorisdazzler- As a cheater yourself did you make it work?
I'm not selfish in everything I do in life, I'm far from it but I would define try say in this situation I have been & I will openly admit that. I do appreciate all your advice & sometimes you need someone to be frank & honest to get anywhere in life x
No i didn't. Because I didn't want to , although I didn't consciously.know that at the time.
I'm not a cheater but have stayed with someone who did and I can tell you his guilt was just more selfishness and self pity and it did my head in. Remorse is different- it's focusing outwards, taking action, trying to work out what in you made you cheat. His guilty whinging is what pushed me further away. Big deal you feel guilty. It really is nothing compared to what the chested on person feel so stop feeling sorry for yourself and focus on helping them instead of them walking on eggshells so you don't feel bad. If someone stays with you after you cheat on them it's generally because they love you and don't actually want you to feel bad all the time.
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