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HELP! Learning to trust new men after cheating husband

(10 Posts)
arizonabelle Sat 03-Sep-16 19:18:52

Hi everybody

I'm struggling at the moment and my friend keeps raving about how amazing you lot are on here, so I thought I'd gather your thinking on something...

At the start of this year, my husband of 1.5 years - together for 11 years - announced he no longer loved me and would be leaving. Although I wasn't in love with him any more, after years of being cheated on and just changing into an older, wiser person, the shock of my marriage ending was incredibly tough.

After 3 or so months of grieving, learning to live alone for the first time in my life (I'm 28), I began dating again. I felt somewhat that I was ready to date even when I first was single, having been unhappy for a few years, but I know now I needed that time to adjust. So I've seen a few men, slept with a few and been dicked over a few times too.

Now, I've found this lovely, lovely man (38) who is a super smart physics teacher, American (I'm an Americaphile), well-suited to me in many ways and (to me) gorgeous. We slept together for the first time last night and was wonderful. He trusted me with some intimate information about himself, which felt really lovely, and we just had a gorgeous night.

Today I'm super happy, but also doing my usual - panicking as soon as a relationship starts to form. We've only had 4 dates so I'm trying not to jump the gun, but I'm just so scarred from 10 years of cheating, lies and having to worry constantly about what my husband was doing (and with whom) that I feel it'll be impossible for me to trust again. I think I may also have some deep-rooted issues from my teenage years, when my mother quite dramatically had an affair.

I'd love to hear any sage words of advice, experience, tips etc. for learning to trust again. I desperately want not to feel paranoid all the time, but already I can feel it - e.g. when he went to the bathroom last night after getting a text, I instantly thought it's from a woman he doesn't want me to know about. How do I train my brain out of these thoughts? I'm already having them now - so how bad will it be 6 months down the line?!!! I know logically I can trust this man (well, in as long as I've known him he hasn't given me a reason to)...

THANK YOU so much in advance! I would really, really love to hear your thoughts x

Wasafatmum42 Sat 03-Sep-16 20:00:16

its hard to trust anyone after being hurt but I will tell you what I have been told not all men are the same try and enjoy the moment and its not too late in the relationship to have a heart to heart about your fears if its meant to be he will work with you and if hes a bad one at least you will know now that far down the line

Good luck OP

NotTheFordType Sat 03-Sep-16 20:56:27

IME the majority of men cheat. Probably about 50% of women.

I've thrown the monogamy myth out of the window many years ago, accepted that relationships will not be exclusive and taken my own freedom as well. I am much happier this way.

KeepCoolCalmAndCollected Sat 03-Sep-16 21:21:06

............when he went to the bathroom last night after getting a text, .......

Tbh, I would be very suspicious of this too. Did he tell you who it was?

My advice is to just go carefully and slow down a bit, you don't know him yet.

SleepingTiger Sat 03-Sep-16 21:44:39

I will give you the first three things that leap out of me....

1. Three months at your age is not long enough to find yourself. You do that through experience, and take the time you know you need. I took two years after a horrific six year marriage, that space was essential. You wouldn't be jumping to the gun on the phone if you did. Neither would you be jumping into this kind of weight on your soul if you did. Equally - and don't forget this - he could be just one of those experiences that get us to where we are going. Don't stay with someone or be with someone out of pity or just because it's comfortable (again). Don't over invest.

2. American men can be - this is a major generalisation, I know - very respectful. This is a country that wants to right wrongs. American women have been at the forefront of this, even though that country can be a paradox sometimes. He may be a good person, but you need time to know this. He might not, possibly. This is a period of learning firstly, have fun but don't make it your goal.

3. You have trust issues. They are yours, you own them.

talesofthevillage Sun 04-Sep-16 08:39:44

Notthefordtype, can you explain what you mean by 'taken my own freedom' ?

NotTheFordType Sun 04-Sep-16 11:46:52

Tales, I mean I give myself and my partners the freedom to have sex with others, and release myself from the prison of waiting for my partners to "cheat". I know they will be having sex with others, therefore the stress of suspicion, checking phones, wondering where they are, etc, is just gone.

talesofthevillage Sun 04-Sep-16 14:54:33

Okay I thought was perhaps what you meant. Not sure I could manage that.

OP I am in the same position so I hope you reach a place where you don't have to worry. I guess you need to keep your wits about you without becoming paranoid.

Anicechocolatecake Sun 04-Sep-16 15:18:25

I'm not sure I have the answer other than to say if you never take a leap of faith, you'll be alone forever. Not everyone cheats.Have you talked to this guy about the damage done to you?

I think after an 11 year relationship where your ex cheated you need at least a couple of years out to grieve and find out who you are as an independent person. Counselling is always useful. It might just be too soon for you for now to be dating.

arizonabelle Sun 04-Sep-16 18:27:24

Thank you ladies! I really appreciate the advice. I'm so torn between taking more time off dating and not, because I'm lonely and I really miss having someone.

I'm on the NHS waiting list for counselling - they can't say how long it will take, but I'm feeling a lot more stable now on a fairly high dose of anti-depressants.

Anyway - I think you're right about having to take a leap of faith. Easier said than done, but I'm trying hard to focus on what a lovely man he is and how I have no reason to doubt him.

As much as I understand the thinking that an open relationship takes away much of the trust issue, I don't think it's something I could do. And I would really, really hate to believe that ALL men cheat. Surely there are a few gems out there who are good people?! Otherwise what's the point?!

Thanks again everyone - so grateful for your thoughts x

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