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Fiance cheated at the start of relationship - now what?

(160 Posts)
blindsidedme Thu 05-Sep-13 20:14:07

Long time lurker, first time poster here - Please give me some advice, I literally have no idea what to do next.

Background: DP and I got together three years ago. Only the month before that he'd come out of a tempestuous 4 year relationship with a woman who cheated* on him and he was feeling a little burned, so perhaps understandably, he was a little cautious at first, but the relationship went from strength to strength. (*I'm certain this is what really happened, not just his version of events - we work in the same field and she's well known to be a nightmare!)

Fast forward three years, and DP proposes - I'm overjoyed, it feels right, and I can't imagine spending my life with anyone else. Last night, we threw an engagement party for family and friends. At the end of the night, I'm in the toilet cubicle, when my fiance's brother's wife walks in with her best friend - they're drunk and talking about me, obviously thinking I've already gone home, and the conversation goes along the lines of: "Do you think we should tell her?"/ "I'd want to know if it was me" / "I don't know, I don't think we should get involved,", etc.

I come out of the toilet, asking what the hell's going on - they're mortified - anyway, I eventually get it out of them that DP cheated on me 4 months into the relationship while on a lad's holiday in Barcelona. DP's brother's wife has known about this all along and was disgusted by it, but had not met me at the time it happened, our friendship has grown since.

I confront DP about this and eventually he admitted it (like he had a choice!), insisting it was just a one night stand, he was drunk, etc. He's begging me to forgive him, saying he'd never do that now, that this was at the start of our relationship, when he still had his guard up - he daren't believe that what we had would last and he feared I'd break his trust just like his ex did, that he's an idiot, etc.

I want to believe him, but this wasn't just a few weeks into our relationship - it was 4 months - we'd had the conversation about being exclusive, we'd recently said the big "L" word, he was talking about introducing me to his family, which he did a couple of months after his holiday.

I've told him I need space to think - he's gone to stay with a friend. Our relationships been wonderful, no other red flags whatsoever - at the back of my mind I've often thought "this is too good to be true"! - well yeah, it was! Now I feel like the last three years have been a lie.

I still love him, and part of me wishes I'd never found out. Another part of me thinks: he's kept this from my fir 2 1/2 years - how can I ever trust him again? I feel foolish, livid and completely dumbfounded.

Has anyone out there been in this situation before? How did you cope? Did you end it or try and make it work?

Thank you x

cloudskitchen Thu 05-Sep-13 20:26:59

Hi there. I can understand how totally hurt you are by this. I know I would be to, and angry to. That said if he can tell you honestly and truthfully that he has been faithful ever since then (if it were me) I would put it behind you. It was a long time ago and your relationship was on a different footing then. I would definitely be having a conversation to make sure all skeletons are out of closet though.

ALittleStranger Thu 05-Sep-13 20:30:38

I'm not sure what advice to give, but I think you're right not to let your DP minimise this. When I clicked on it I thought it was going to be another poster complaining that her DP had been dating someone else when they met. But as you say, you were firmly in a relationship by this point. "It's just a ONS" is no excuse - a ONS is still cheating.

I do think it's possible to seperate this from how he felt about you when your relationship was more serious and he proposed. It's messy and it means you're now always going to dislike your "love story" but he has chosen to make a commitment to you and as long as his behaviour has been beyond reproach since I think you could rationalise this to yourself if that's what you want.

I'm sorry you're going through this OP, I really don't know what I'd do in your situation.

blindsidedme Thu 05-Sep-13 20:33:53

Thanks for reading Clouds. I do truly believe he's been faithful ever since, but then until yesterday, I believed he'd been faithful full stop!! The wedding venue is already booked for next summer - I feel sick at the thought of going through with the marriage right now. But if I cancel, what am I supposed to tell everyone? I couldn't bear for them to know the real reason.

blindsidedme Thu 05-Sep-13 20:35:41

Alittlestranger that's exactly it - he's completely ruined our "love story" hasn't he?

I'm so mad I can't think straight right now.

FabricQueen Thu 05-Sep-13 20:38:42

I'm afraid under those circumstances I would leave him. I know it's horrible, and a shock. But you have to accept that you don't really know him sad

I think you'll probably want to stay and work it through, but this will niggle at you and it won't ever be the same again. 4 months in is bloody ages! I would be livid, and incredibly hurt with my trust in the person shattered - and quite rightly so. I don't think I'd be able to find a way back from it, it doesn't matter how he wraps it up; it was a shitty thing to do and should make you question his whole character.
So sorry, OP. At least postpone the wedding indefinitely if you do decide to stay with him. But I'm really hoping you don't.

blindsidedme Thu 05-Sep-13 20:42:28

FabricQueen I fear you're right, that it will niggle at me and I just won't be able to get past it.

I really thought I'd found the man I was going to spend the rest of my life with. I just can't reconcile the man I thought I knew and what he's done sad

Xales Thu 05-Sep-13 20:43:55

Nothing more to add to the sensible posts apart from to advise that you both go for a complete STI test. You have no idea about this other person and some things don't always have symptoms but can cause a lot of damage. Even condoms don't protect 100%.

Take as long as you need to sort yourself out.

If you cancel as some already know the real reason there is no point making up another as you don't know how many people know. Lads holiday = a few? They all know, they may have told others.

Cancelling doesn't mean you won't get married eventually. Just now/next year may not be the right time.

Attackofthefiftyfootwoman Thu 05-Sep-13 20:47:09

I don't post often, but this post really got to me, if he told you he loved and THEN cheated that for me is a big thing. Ask yourself what would you have done at the time if you found out then ?

Maybe he should have come clean when he proposed (assuming it was him who asked) that would make it a slightly better scenario.

He should be making BIG steps to reconcile this. If he puts in less than 150% to sort this out I would be leaving him tbh.

Attackofthefiftyfootwoman Thu 05-Sep-13 20:48:56

Oh and I went through with a wedding that I should have postponed/ cancelled because I was worried about what people would think. This is about you ... what other people think does not matter.

cloudskitchen Thu 05-Sep-13 21:00:21

You should only go through with the wedding if its totally what you want. Please don't worry about what other people think. Its how you feel that's most important. This is a life decision. You need to be happy with it x

Doha Thu 05-Sep-13 21:15:05

It's obvious that you were the last to know as people have been talking about it--it was a secret only to you.That in itself is quite humiliating.

You really need quite a bit of time and space to digest and process all this.
He is not the man you thought he was.
In fact he is as bad as his ex. Bottom line he cheated on you!! Being drunk and having his guard up is no excuse at all.

However only you know if this is a dealbreaker for you. You trust has been shattered, can you forgive if not forger. it is a big ask.
Good luck with whatever you decide

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 21:21:15

It will be so much easier to walk away from this man who lies and cheats this side of marriage and children.

Having children with a man makes you very dependent on him.

You need to pick someone you can trust with your life.

He's not that guy.

He told you he loved you and then went and found someone else to fuck on a lads holiday.

You only know because someone else told you.

You have no reason at all to believe this was the only time.

Men who have ONS on lad's holidays tend to make a habit of casual cheating.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 21:23:28

And also, the fact that he was happy to cheat on you so publicly and keep it a secret from you while so many of your friends knew says nothing good about him.

A man who truly cared about you would not have been happy to have you humiliated like that to save his own hide.

He is a selfish, dishonest man.

You can't rely on him.

WoundUpWanda Thu 05-Sep-13 21:29:19

A weeks in, you've just met..maybe you're just some lass he's texting- doesn't know where he stands.

But 4 months? 4 months into a relationship should be honeymoon period, enjoying and learning about each other, not getting balls deep in other women on 'lads' holidays.

I'm really sorry and it's not what you want to hear, but I would have to leave. I couldn't enter this marriage knowing this, nor would I want to stay if I had just found out.

Now you know this, every holiday away from you or night out where he comes back late, you will be tearing yourself apart with that horrible niggling feeling and questions of what he is doing. I wouldn't like that feeling when I had two kids, are a bit older and more financially dependant on him in terms of paying a mortgage.

I am so sorry though. But please have some respect for yourself. The thought of everyone who knows discussing it boozily at the wedding reception is making my stomach churn.

WoundUpWanda Thu 05-Sep-13 21:31:43

Everyone knew before you did sad

How humiliating.

And he let you be humiliated like that.

That's worse.

WipsGlitter Thu 05-Sep-13 21:37:43

Something similar happened to me. I forgave him. We have two children now and are very happy. I don't worry about it happening again. I don't think our months in is that long in the scheme of things.

WipsGlitter Thu 05-Sep-13 21:37:58

Four months

msrisotto Thu 05-Sep-13 21:49:24

Wow. What a horrible revelation for you. If it were me, i'd cancel the wedding. You can get married any time, when you are 100% sure and right now, you're not. Understandably so. I would certainly be reconsidering spending my life with someone like that. He lied to your face, told you he loved you when he slept with someone else. Awful.

blindsidedme Thu 05-Sep-13 21:51:53

Thank you so much for all your responses.

I need to postpone this wedding at the very least, don't I? (Second only to having a STI check!) My parents have paid the deposit for the venue - telling them the truth feels like the beginning of the end - they're never going to forgive him for this.

Just spoken to DP's brother's wife - apparently she and her DH have just had a huge row about her letting the cat out of the bag. I asked her who else knows about it - she claims only her, her best friend and the lads he was on holiday with, who are from his old job and who we weren't planning on inviting to the wedding.

The irony is, I was never the clingy girlfriend - DP went on several long weekends away to visit his friend overseas and I was happy to socialise with my friends in his absence. Perhaps I was naive, but I trusted him - I never had any reason not to. The last thing I want is to turn into the woman who's a nervous wreck every time her OH comes back late - I can't live like that.

Playfellows you're right - it would be easier to walk away this side of marriage and children. Thing is, marriage and children was exactly where I thought we were heading - I can't quite get my head around having to start again.

Oh god, I think I need wine

Quiltcover Thu 05-Sep-13 21:55:36

This isn't a lost cause. How he manages this situation now will say a lot as to whether the relationship can be saved. You have every right to be angry and hurt. He had behaved appallingly.
But you have said apart from this incident he has been faithful since. He wants to marry you and loves you. Once something is lied about it us very difficult to come clean and there has probably been no real opportunity for him yk tell you.
If he displays every sign of remorse, could you move on? Do you want to throw away your future with him (genuine question?)

Doha Thu 05-Sep-13 21:56:43

I know that is all the people you think that know, but l wonder how many lads told their partners etc- just like his brother did. Secrets take legs and can run fast sad

blindsidedme Thu 05-Sep-13 22:03:38

I don't want to throw away the future I thought we had until yesterday...I genuinely don't know if we have a future where I can get past this and be the same calm trusting person I used to be.

If I'd have found out about his ONS at the time it happened there's no question, I would have walked away, but our relationship's grown so much since then. If the cheating had happened recently, again, there's no question - I'd end it immediately. The situation as it is - I really don't know!!!

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 22:03:47

"But you have said apart from this incident he has been faithful since."

A few days ago she thought he had always been faithful.

Given that he has a roped all of their mutual friends into lying to her about his activities when they are apart, it's very far from certain that this is the only time.

blindsided - marrying this guy now is a massive risk.

It might seem safe because it is the status quo and what you have been expecting, but you didn't know what kind of person you were dealing with.

This is a man who had your entire social circle lying to you so that he could get what he wanted.

That kind of selfishness is not what you need is a spouse. It really isn't.

Stropzilla Thu 05-Sep-13 22:18:06

Oh no that's horrible. Don't make any decisions now. Take a few days to be able to think clearly. My personal feeling is 4 months in isn't long. Maybe like you he didn't realise how far you could go together and didn't want to throw away what you had for the sake of a stupid mistake? Admitting cheating would have finished you so best to keep quiet over a ons. I think people deserve one second chance but only one. But that's my opinion and if in a few days you still can't see a way through don't postpone the wedding just cancel.

I will say someone came on here admitting to a ons and asking if they should come clean. The general reply was no. If it was a genuine mistake and they loved him telling him would only help her guilt and hurt him. This is no different. Forgive if you want to and you think he can earn back your trust.

Stropzilla Thu 05-Sep-13 22:23:08

Joinyourplayfellows you said given that he's roped all their friends into lying means it's not the first time I'd argue that. Its possible he's basically an honest guy who realised his mistake, confessed to get advise and was told if you love her don't tell her. If they could see he was genuinely sorry they might agree to keep it between them. Right or wrong it's possible.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 22:27:11

Basically honest people don't allow the person they claim to love to live their life based on a lie that is known to most of their friends.

They just don't.

She was utterly humiliated at her own engagement party because he was too much of a selfish dick to share what was common knowledge amongst their friends.

Doha Thu 05-Sep-13 22:30:20

Have to agree with JoinYourPlayffellows

Stropzilla Thu 05-Sep-13 22:34:17

Oh he was definitely a dick. I'm just wondering if he did what he thought was the lesser of 2 evils after. Imo should have told her before getting engaged (not doing it at all would have been ideal) but if it was a genuine mistake and has behaved since is forgiveness that hard to imagine?

littlebunnyfriend Thu 05-Sep-13 22:35:29

Don't make any decisions now, including postponing the wedding. Next summer is a long time away.

He did do an awful thing and deserves to be made to feel horrendous for what he's done. He needs a clear message that this is not acceptable to you and realise the pain he has caused you.

If you love him and he loves you, I do think you can move forward from this eventually though. It sounds like he got involved with you when he wasn't mentally quite ready and made a really stupid mistake. It was horrific but doesn't erase any of the other good stuff that you have shared together since then.

Just give yourself some time and don't put any pressure on yourself - also, be careful of getting too sucked in to the replies on here. You'll get the extremes of emotions from people based on their own experiences.

Stropzilla Thu 05-Sep-13 22:36:42

Agree littlebunnyfriend

Letsadmitit Thu 05-Sep-13 22:39:07

No, you don't need to postpone the wedding, at least not yet, it is so very far into the future it doesn't really matter, you have enough time to think things through, save or end the relationship. If you are going to cancel you do it when you are totally and utterly sure you don't want to marry this guy because you don't love him anymore. Don't let pride do the talking, do things with a cold head.

I'm convinced the women you heard the news from, KNEW you could hear them. At 4 months you are still pretty much a new woman in the view of all his friends, 3 years later nobody cares about the beginning they just care about your present happiness, why did they decide to tell you after all this time is beyond me.

If you love him, give him a chance, he may have fallen in love later than you thought, or he may have been a total drunken idiot who didn't know what he was doing on that night. Not a excuse, but would you write off such an important relationship for a woman whose face/name he might not even remember?

Letsadmitit Thu 05-Sep-13 22:41:02

Yeah, I know is the principle "once a cheater always a cheater" but... it doesn't always work this way.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 22:42:40

"if it was a genuine mistake and has behaved since is forgiveness that hard to imagine?"

It's had to know that "genuine" mistake means here.

He openly went out and found another woman to have sex with whilst on holidays with people his new girlfriend, who he was supposedly in love with were there.

So that wasn't a mistake. It was something he actively chose to do because he felt like it.

He got them all to keep schtum, because that's what lying cheats do.

The very best interpretation is that he later realised that he actually did love her very much.

But even then he didn't care about her wellbeing enough to give her the heads up about something that he knew loads of other people knew about.

The worst interpretation is that he's just the kind of guy who does things like this (and hangs out with other guys who help him get away with it).

Whichever it is, choosing to tie herself to him for life is not looking like such a rosy option now.

A lifetime of knowing that the man you spend your life with didn't love you enough at the start to deny himself the chance to shag someone else while on holiday.

A lifetime of doubt that he is someone you can really trust and of wondering what else everybody else knows that you don't.

Starting afresh and hoping to do better next time doesn't look like that bad an option.

She doesn't owe him any chances.

Buttercup4 Thu 05-Sep-13 22:44:12

OP, I'm so sorry you are in this situation. I've been there, its horrible.

My DH cheated on me even about 6 months into our relationship, with his ex. It was soul destroying, the pain of it was excruciating. It was the betrayal, the embarrassment, the fact lots of people knew before me, that I felt second best and so many more things.

I decided to stay with him, and 3 years on we are married.

It took a very long time to get over it. For about a year afterwards I would cry randomly at the thought of it. I used to flinch when we had sex as I thought of him doing those things to her.

I'm not telling you this to upset you, I don't regret my decision now, but there were times when it was so horrible, I did regret it. I just want you to know, that in my experience its a very difficult thing to get over. It's not quick and its not easy, you just need to decide if you think it will be worth it.

LoisPuddingLane Thu 05-Sep-13 22:44:39

What's this genuine mistake business?

A genuine mistake is something like putting salt in your tea thinking it's sugar. A genuine mistake is not telling someone you love them and then going off and shagging someone else. That shows intent - whether he planned to do it or whether it was a spur of the moment thing - you don't just fall into someone's vagina mistakenly.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 22:45:30

"why did they decide to tell you after all this time is beyond me."

Maybe they know more than they have let on so far?

They obviously like the OP and felt she needed to know something about this guy before she married him.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 22:47:21

"A genuine mistake is something like putting salt in your tea thinking it's sugar."

grin

Exactly.

Well it either means that or "a man has done something he enjoyed and plans to do again but doesn't want her indoors to get in a strop about"

Stropzilla Thu 05-Sep-13 22:48:53

Join I'm going the best interpretation here that later he did discover his depth of feeling. If there's any doubt of that then yes she needs to finish with him. It is possible to re build however and I just think she needs to consider her next move for a few days rather than do something rashly be that agree to try again or to finish.

Xmasbaby11 Thu 05-Sep-13 22:50:28

You were right to trust him - it is his fault, not yours. I think his behaviour was disgusting.

Take your time to think about what to do. I don't think I could forgive him.

Quaffle Thu 05-Sep-13 22:50:41

They knew you'd overhear them. Make no mistake about that.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 22:53:33

It is possible to rebuild.

But it's incredibly hard and painful and for many people things are never quite the same.

You put yourself through that when you are already married, when you have children together, when you have a couple of decades under the belt.

blindsided, you have only been with this guy for a few years.

You don't owe this relationship or this man the horrible pain of getting past infidelity and years of lies.

You owe yourself the very happiest life you can make for yourself.

Can this relationship, based on lies as you now know it has pretty much always been, really give you that?

Letsadmitit Thu 05-Sep-13 22:53:33

The theory is that you should leave him, that's the principle. But life is never black and white.

I can assure you that most people say they won't put up with an affair but most of them will be willing to work things through once a situation like this presents to them.

cloudskitchen Thu 05-Sep-13 22:53:54

Agree with letsadmitit and littlebunnyfriend. Take your time. Wedding is a long way off. Don't rush your decision. I also agree with not being drawn too much into opinion on here. Nobody knows every aspect of your relationship except you and (d)P. Horrible revelation, I hope you can find some clarity soon x

SlumberingDormouse Thu 05-Sep-13 22:55:37

I had a very similar situation recently; I discovered that my DP had a ONS three days into our relationship. I have forgiven him, but I took my time and made sure he was really remorseful. I also made him pay - he did a physically taxing charity challenge for a charity of my choice, and raised a large amount of money. To me, that made something positive out of a shitty situation. He also knows that if he ever does it again, it is absolutely game over. I must say that it took me a few days to come to a decision. Don't rush it. I wish you the best of luck.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 22:56:03

"Nobody knows every aspect of your relationship except you and (d)P."

Stropzilla Thu 05-Sep-13 22:57:41

No join you're right she doesn't owe him anything. Equally she shouldn't just dismiss the whole relationship over one dick move 16 weeks in, years ago. She should do what she feels comfortable doing.

JoinYourPlayfellows Thu 05-Sep-13 23:02:07

"She should do what she feels comfortable doing."

No, not what makes her comfortable, what makes her feel most excited and happy about the rest of her life.

smile

Letsadmitit Thu 05-Sep-13 23:03:00

"you don't just fall into someone's vagina mistakenly."

Having seen many people in holidays drinking until they end up literally crawling on the streets and with no recollections of the night, I have to say that... I don't dismiss the possibility.

Actually, I remember being dancing in a club popular among tourists, when the couple who was dancing next to me, fell to the floor totally drunk and started shagging in the middle of the dancing area... everybody kept dancing and left them to that.

20 years later, I still cringe at the memory.

Tiptops Fri 06-Sep-13 00:10:06

I don't think you should make any decisions right now blindsided. This only happened last night? Your emotions are bound to be all over the place, and shock won't be helping you to think clearly. Give yourself a few days to contemplate everything and make a judgement then.

It's impossible to advise you what to do because you should follow your own gut instinct, which could be totally different to mine IYSWIM. Without being in the situation it's hard to say 100% but I think I would forgive this one transgression, providing it is the one and only thing he has been withholding from you. To me, 4 months is still a very new relationship and the commitment to someone wouldn't be as intense as a long standing relationship. Not excusing his behaviour at all and I have never cheated on someone myself, but trying to see it from the other perspective.

PowerPants Fri 06-Sep-13 00:14:17

I am going to stick my neck out and say I would let it go.

His behaviour is utterly crap but I would allow for the fact that it was really really early in your relationship and he hasn't done it again. I would allow him this one mistake, while making it perfectly clear if it were to happen again, it's over.

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 06-Sep-13 00:18:02

"I would allow him this one mistake, while making it perfectly clear if it were to happen again, it's over."

If it were to happen again she might be pregnant or have small children or have given up her financial independence to be a SAHM.

If there's a next time, she won't be able to leave anywhere near as easily as she can now.

That's worth bearing in mind in the decision-making process.

PowerPants Fri 06-Sep-13 00:35:51

Sure.

But then you're assuming it's going to happen again. To me, from what OP has said, that sounds very very unlikely.

I do agree by the way that you were MEANT to hear that conversation.

aurynne Fri 06-Sep-13 00:48:41

What is clear is that your fiancé is very good at telling lies and hiding terrible truths. If he did it again... how do you know he would tell you? Answer: he most probably wouldn't.

Sorry, I couldn't get over this. not as much the cheating... but all the time keeping it a secret.

MariaLuna Fri 06-Sep-13 00:54:39

Don't marry this man.

Unless you want a cheating husband....

PinkPlum Fri 06-Sep-13 01:09:06

Speaking from experience, leave. Don't stay with him. He betrayed you. Even if you think you might be able to get past this now, somewhere down the line things will unravel. Cut your losses before you end up married to the guy and with his children. That's what happened to me. Don't get me wrong, I love my babies to bits and wouldn't trade them for the world but I look back and think how foolish I was to carry on with the wedding when I knew it wasn't right. Now sadly my children are suffering the fallout of our marriage breakdown. Good luck and be strong. You deserve better.

Hissy Fri 06-Sep-13 07:42:38

You don't have to make any kind of decision yet.

The only thing perhaps you ought to ascertain is IF, this early, would your deposit be returned?

If yes, get it back now. Just in case. If it's lost anyway, then no need to do anything.

Talk to your parents when and if you feel you need to.

The main thing is that you need to take time and space to be able to listen to what your gut instincts are telling you.

You don't need to do anything right now, just take some time for you.

Your OH needs to give you that space.

It's good you know now, so you can make an educated decision, it'd be a whole lot worse if you found out after marrying him. This woman has done you a huge favour. Your decision will be based on truth.

ageofgrandillusion Fri 06-Sep-13 08:47:22

The killer for me OP is he did this in the early days of the relationship when most couples are proper loved up and the relationship is very intense. That would worry me. It wasnt like he could use the usual excuse of a relationship having gone stale/kids making things difficult etc. as a bare minimum i'd postpone wedding.

cloudskitchen Fri 06-Sep-13 09:03:34

How are you this morning op?

blindsidedme Fri 06-Sep-13 09:08:40

Morning all, thank you for all your responses - such a variety of advice and opinions, so much to think about.

I barely slept last night - one thing I can't get out of my head is that when DP's ex was unfaithful to him, it was a fling while she was on a girl's holiday in Ibiza. Despite their 4 year relationship and her begging for forgiveness, he ended the relationship immediately. If infidelity was such a dealbreaker to him, why did he do it himself? It's almost like he was punishing ME for what she did to him.

Friends have always said I'm so lucky to have such an emotionally intelligent man as DP - a good listener, caring, etc (not to mention handsome, successful, educated, witty, blah blah). I can just picture the look on their faces when I tell them this.

I will make inquiries today re. getting the wedding venue deposit back. In the culture I'm from weddings are such a big deal - as an only daughter, my parents have literally been putting money aside for this wedding since I was born! If I tell them what he's done, the only thing they'll be paying for is a one way ticket for him to Mars.

I'm 31 and so broody it's ridiculous. The thought of starting again and not having kids for years breaks my heart. Then again, the thought of bringing kids into a situation with someone who can pull the rug out from under me like this terrifies me. I really did think he'd make a brilliant father too. sad

Sorry if this sounds jumbled, I'm finding it really hard to think straight this morning.

LittleMissGerardButlerfan Fri 06-Sep-13 09:23:39

How awful for you. Only you can decide what to do but for me I would find it hard to trust them again.

And I was going to say like you mentioned, if he was so upset that his partner cheated on him, why on earth did he then go and do the same? Are you sure it was her that cheated and not him?

Take your time and do what is right for you.

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 06-Sep-13 09:29:26

Suggested plan of action for today:

1 see about the deposit

2 arrange to have some time with some good friends

You don't need to tell your parents, but some real life support from people who love you and know you well would really help.

There is no pressure on you right now, despite how it must feel.

You have had a really devastating shock.

Give yourself the space and time to come to terms with what has happened and don't worry yourself about what happens next at the moment. It's too soon.

You can be in crisis mode - do what it takes to get you through the day, do nice things for yourself. And watch crap TV/read a trashy novel/ whatever your "switch off my brain" poison of choice is when thinking about it gets too much.

Try not to look for comfort where you would recently have sought it. The man who has hurt you can't provide the comfort you need right now. It will be confusing and upsetting if you turn to him.

Clarity will come in time. Don't let anybody rush you.

At some point in the future you will look back on this and it will just have been a blip of pain in an otherwise happy story, whether you marry this guy or someone else.

I'm going to stick my neck out too and say this is workable.
Well it may not be for you - but for me it would be.
It was only 4 months in.
You were only 'talking' about being exclusive.
And I'm sure he was still reeling from the hurt his ex caused him.
I think you need some space to think about things.
Then you need to have a long talk with him on neutral ground and really thrash this out.
If you can't forgive then you know it's over.
But I don't think you should be making any big decisions right now.
It's still very raw for you.

blindsidedme Fri 06-Sep-13 09:32:50

I'm definitely sure it was the ex who cheated not him - we work in the same field and people who know both of us can back the story up. She has an incredibly high opinion of herself and thought he was so besotted by her, he would forgive her.

FWIW, the ex was horrendous towards me when we first got together - in fact, the week DP was in Barcelona getting his end away, I had no choice but to go away on a conference with this woman - at one point she cornered me and hissed: "when he fucks you, he thinks of me!"

To those of you who said you reckon SIL knew I was in the toilet when she made those comments about DPs cheating, this didn't even cross my mind, but I shall definitely be having another talk to her today in case there's anything else I need to know.

What a mess...

blindsidedme Fri 06-Sep-13 09:35:37

I'm not going to make any rash decisions. I've told DP I need space and he has respected that - I will contact him when I am ready - it's so hard though because he's the first person I would have usually gone to for comfort - I definitely need to keep myself busy.

coppertop Fri 06-Sep-13 09:44:25

What would concern me is this line from your OP:

"I confront DP about this and eventually he admitted it"

He continued to lie about it even when you directly asked him what had happened. If you decide to stay together, he needs to understand that he will have to work extremely hard to earn your trust back and will have to continue to do so throughout the relationship. There is no going back to the times when you had no reason to doubt him.

LoisPuddingLane Fri 06-Sep-13 09:44:46

I don't dismiss the possibility

I've never done it on a dancefloor, but I've had sex when drunk, as have a lot of people. I've had sex that would, in sobriety, seem extremely ill-advised. But at no point did anyone just fall into me as if on a banana skin. There was intent - be it very ill-judged in a lot of cases. To say it was accidental or a genuine mistake really minimises it and makes it seem like it was simply a lack of control of bodily function. At the time it always seemed perfectly sensible. You make a decision to put yourself into someone's body, or to allow someone into your body.

If I had been with someone four months and thought we were exclusive and we'd said we loved each other, and then I found out he knobbed someone on holiday, I would end it. Finding out some years later, I suspect I still would.

TalkativeJim Fri 06-Sep-13 09:56:15

I too would leave him, absolutely.

What you now know is that this is a man who, when everything is at its best - first flush of love, totally loved-up and at the point at which he should have been going to bed dreaming of you and crossing off the days before he can see you again - he cheats.

You'd want that person to be the one you need to rely on to be faithful through all the tough times? I wouldn't. You won't trust him, there's absolutely no reason why you would, you'd be a fool to trust him because your sensible head will always, always tell you that this WASN'T a 'mistake', there's no possible 'mitigating circumstances' ('It's been so dificult since the baby, we haven't had sex for eight months blah blah') - no, he cheated straightaway, without a thought, because he could. That's the measure of him. Low quality lad-brain type of man who falls at the first 'hurdle'.

I would NOT want that man beside me as my life partner.

I would NOT want to wait until I was tied to him financially and with a family to find out that - surprise surprise!! - yes he would cheat again, and does, and has, and that all the tears were a pile of crap.

I would absolutely move on now. Just like he did!

LoisPuddingLane Fri 06-Sep-13 10:10:58

when everything is at its best...he cheats

Yes, that's the crux of it. When you are first seeing someone and it's getting serious, that is the time when you love everything about them and can't wait to see them. If at that point, when everything about your story was still new and golden, he could shag someone else, it doesn't bode well.

It's not just the cheating thanks

He lied to you and so did everyone else, on his call. He has humiliated you & lied this whole time. A mistake or not, that's what he's capable of & its down to you to figure out if you can trust him or forgive him.

He can't downplay it either. You'd gone exclusive and said you loved each other. If he felt so unsure of the relationship then why say he loved you? And why go exclusive? He cheated because he wanted to at the time. He can't sugarcoat that.

Op, sorry.

You know two things about your dps character now:

1. He will happily take the opportunity to have a shag if he fancies one whether you are there or not. You know his morals now.
2. He is quite capable of deceit. He has known this for years, and has had no problem coming home to you to resume life as if nothing has happened, and continue progressing your relationship.

This knowledge would be enough for me to cancel any wedding and ask the man to jog on. But thats me. You may not want to be that knee jerk. Just accept that you dont know him as well as you thought you did, at least.

I don't know what I'd do.

I often see on here that the start of a relationship is when you're all loved up, passionate and intense- and so to be unfaithful then is particularly bad.

I don't think so- the first few months can be exciting but confusing too - there can be mixed feeling like 'this is it!' Or 'so I am attractive after all' - or 'this relationship mightnt work out anyway' - all different feelings which might make some people more vulnerable to cheating at this new stage rather than when they are more comfortable as a couple.

onlytheonce Fri 06-Sep-13 10:30:31

Name changed for this.

I cheated at the start of my relationship with my partner. I visited a friend from uni and on a night out he pulled a woman who was out with one of her mates. Ended up back at the house and I was basically left alone with the friend and we ended up snogging.

I could make excuses for this (I was drunk, it was just the start of a relationship, it was 'only' a snog etc) but I know it was wrong. I'm pretty sure that if I had told my partner that would be it so I didn't do so.

This was over 6 years ago. I was mortified about what I'd done and have made damn sure that I wouldn't do so again. I've made sure I'm not even in a position where I'd be tempted. I'm sure people will say I should have been honest, and they're probably right.

I know there are differences in the situation, but I wanted to show that the adage about 'once a cheat, always a cheat' isn't always true. It's obviously down to you whether you think you can forgive the deception and cheating, and I'm not trying to downplay that.

6 years is not a long time. Just because you have not snogged/shagged someobdy so far, does not mean you never will. I am sorry, but I still believe that old adage.

You have built your relationship on rocky foundations, op!

On onlytheonce's point, I think it's less about the cheating in a way and more about how much/long he covered it up. It's a bigger betrayal than a snog & something I think you should tell your partner if you want the relationship to continue.

Also, other people knew about it, and has covered for her fiance.

How humiliating.

onlytheonce Fri 06-Sep-13 10:40:55

You are right of course, but people can also cheat when they have never done so before. I would say I am less likely to cheat now having had a scare. It's a perfectly reasonable position to think that I have shown my true character and it's just a matter of time until I do it again but I don't think that's me...

I know it's a big ask for the OP to trust them again.

onlytheonce Fri 06-Sep-13 10:44:14

To be clear, the only reason I said anything was in respect to whether he would do it again. All the points about covering it up etc are completely right.

I don't think once a cheat always a cheat either-

Maybe op you and df could get some counselling and you can hear what he has to say - and what he can learn from this- with an impartial outsider.

^ I agree that once a cheat doesn't mean always.

But I think if he'd rather lie & risk humiliating her like that than tell her something that important, then it says a lot about the type of man he is, however good the relationship may seem besides that.

the trust is broken. deal breaker for me i'm afraid. and when kids come along the going gets tough: sleepless nights, no time to yourself, feeling like you've been hit by a bulldozer. will your relationship be strong enough to whether that storm?

he's already demonstrated that at the best point, the honeymoon period, he's shagged someone else. this guy isn't trustworthy.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 06-Sep-13 10:52:30

My opinion is to not cancel the venue this early. This revelation is still very raw and new and I don't think you should be thinking about making such life changing decisions so quickly. I think you said the wedding isn't until next summer? That's 9 months away which give you plenty of time to sort things put with your fiancée. How would you feel if you cancelled the wedding and in a months time you have managed to get past his cheating? You're then back to hunting for another venue booking etc and God knows how long that would take. I imagine you are very angry, rightly so and a knee jerk reaction is to cancel the wedding as a punishment to him, but unless you are 100% sure that you can never forgive him and that you never want to marry him, then leave the Wedding Booked.

I also think this is something that can be worked through _ you need to give yourself some time to let your anger and hurt settle down but I do believe that you can move past it if you genuinely believe he loves you and you genuinely believe he has not cheated on you apart from that one time.

You say he'd not long come out of a relationship when you met him that obviously hadn't been a nice break-up and there is no telling how that can affect someone. I have had awful break ups in the past with long term boyfriends and it sent me off the rails. Maybe your boyfriend just got scared that he'd gone from one relationship to another very quickly and his sleeping with someone else was his way of trying to tell himself that he didn't love you, not because he didn't, but just because he was scared of that codependency again. Also, if he had trust issues after his ex, he may have been scared to put his trust in you and him doing what he did was just another way of him drunkenly and stupidly acting like he didn't need you.

When I had problems with one of my exes a wise woman said to me, "This is real life and love doesn't always happen like it does in the movies!"

Just think very, very carefully about your next action and don't rush into something you will regret.

People can be stupid at times, most of us have done stupid things that have unfortunately hurt other people, usually those closest to us, but does that mean we should be written off? Too err is human, to forgive, divine. It would be different if he had been cheating on you for years but I doubt he has, he just made a stupid mistake a long time ago on the back of what seemed like a bad relationship. I'm not excusing what he did, but not everything is black and white.

You just need to ask yourself if you are prepared to throw away the future you had planned because of what he did.

I feel for you because whatever decision you make will be hard but just take your time in thinking about your next step. I would at least live it a month or so before even considering cancelling the wedding, just give yourself some time to get your head around it, make sense of it and spend lots of time talking to your fiancée about how you can move on from this. X x

oranges Fri 06-Sep-13 10:57:05

Don't postpone the wedding - it just delays you having to make a decision about whether you want to be with this man. Be wary of someone who uses an ex's bad behaviour to act like a prat himself.

blindsidedme Fri 06-Sep-13 11:00:46

Maybe your boyfriend just got scared that he'd gone from one relationship to another very quickly and his sleeping with someone else was his way of trying to tell himself that he didn't love you, not because he didn't, but just because he was scared of that codependency again. Also, if he had trust issues after his ex, he may have been scared to put his trust in you and him doing what he did was just another way of him drunkenly and stupidly acting like he didn't need you.

I think that's pretty much summed up exactly what was going through DP's head - question is, whether I can get past this or not.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 06-Sep-13 11:03:14

If it was me, I would really want to try x

IF that was going through his mind, then he is a pretty good hypocrite, and manipulative too! hmm How can he say he loves you, and want to be exclusive and act all lovey dovey, and then go shag somebody because he is scared? Sounds manipulative to me. Maybe he just wanted YOU to be exclusive and said I love you to that end? Because he had such bad experience with his Ex he set different rules for you two...

Junebugjr Fri 06-Sep-13 11:05:19

Two minds about this- it could be a pissed up ONS, which he bitterly regretted and would never do again.
On the other hand, he has cheated when you are in the first flush of love, when everything is at its best, which is usually when your head is so full of the other person you don't notice anyone else. I would be concerned about his fidelity when you have kids and everything is drudgery for a few years. The thought that others knew as well would humiliate me, walking down the aisle wondering who else knows would take the shine off everything for me. I really feel for you OP.
I suppose it comes down to if you feel you can take the chance on him. It's a hell of a chance to take though, committing to someone financially and having their children knowing what you now. He could never do it again, or he could be a shagging bastard giving you a heads up of things to come.
Personally I'd knock this on the head, you have no children together, and being as young as you are could start again, and find someone else to be happy with instead of this possibly shadowing the rest of the relationship.
Easier for an outsider to say though, not having an emotional attachment!

Be kind to yourself, you don't have to make any decisions straight away, take a few months to firmly decide what you want to do. Tell your friends and get some RL support xx

peggyundercrackers Fri 06-Sep-13 11:06:09

if it was me who was in your situation i think i would need to think about forgiving him rather than walking away and making any rash decisions as I dont think 4 months into a relationship is that long.

as for the STI stuff - if nothing has showed up in the last 2.5 years i dont think i would be rushing off to the docs.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 06-Sep-13 11:16:26

I just have a true life experience I'd like to share with you blindside

Me and my sister are very close and we have a mutual best friend. We have all been best friends for 16-17 years now.

About 6 years ago my sister slept with our best friends fiancée. I won't go into detail about how I know but it absolutely shook my world. I had no idea what to do. I felt my loyalty was to my sister, who also had a long term partner and a young son with him.

About 3 months after it happened I confronted my friends fiancée about it and he broke down in absolute tears. We talked about it a lot and I promised I wouldn't say anything - and I never have. So for 6 years I have lived what that secret, and when me and my sister stood there as her bridesmaids at their wedding it sat very uncomfortable.

However, fast forward to now and he is a fantastic husband and I have no doubts whatsoever about his being faithful to her. They have 2 children together and he is a brilliant father and does everything possible to make sure his family have a good life. It took me a long time to get over what he had done, but it is well and truly in the past now.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that in that situation he cheated on his fiancée when they'd been together for years, and cheated with her best friend - could anything seem more awful? But, fast forward to now and I feel relieved that I never told my friend. Part of me wonders what would have happened if she knew, I actually think they may have worked it out, but when I look at how happy they are now and what a wonderful family they have. I know I will always have the weight of my decision on my shoulders but I feel like I made the right one.

I know it's different to your situation as you know about your boyfriends cheating but it did happen very early on in your relationship and just because of a stupid mistake he made years ago, that doesn't mean he should be written off and that he doesn't have the potential to make you happy.

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 06-Sep-13 11:22:50

It wasn't that long ago, though, was it?

It was only just over 2 years ago.

That's around how long it is reckoned by many on here it takes to get back to normal after a revelation of infidelity.

So you'd have your entire relationship over again trying to get over what he did to you in the first half of your time together.

So first half of relationship - based entirely on lies (lies that were well known to others)

Second half of relationship - based on trying to get over the first half of the relationship.

You'll be at least 6 years together before you can have any kind of normal, happy relationship.

And you might actually be able to have children more quickly with someone else, because rushing into it with this dude would be a massive, mistake.

No matter what you decide, the relationship you thought you had is over.

Loopytiles Fri 06-Sep-13 11:41:51

I would be practical and find out about cancellation costs for the venue and any other wedding things you've booked and would cancel for now. You don't need to tell people anything yet.

I would ask him, and the friend who told you if, there has been other infidelity. And make it clear that if he lies and you ever find out there will be no way back.

But if he'd been a good partner apart from this and worked hard to win back trust think I could forgive him.

saffronwblue Fri 06-Sep-13 11:42:15

I really feel for you OP. DH and I got together very quickly. Living together after a few weeks and engaged after 4 months. During our engagement I found that he had been having regular lunches with an ex. I don't think they were sexual but I was upset that he had clearly decided to keep them from me.
We have now been married for 16 years, mostly happily. That episode did rock my confidence a bit and has left its mark on our marriage. I don't regret marrying him but it made me realise I didn't really know him.
I don't know what to advise you but I feel for you. I would be asking his friends honestly if they thought this ONS was out of character for him?

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 06-Sep-13 11:53:55

The others knowing is humiliating but it was up to him to tell you. His SIL was 'disgusted' but not so appalled she ever told you.

You can say to him he was a different person then. It was before he proposed and you're upset but can still see a future with him. You love him now. He ever puts himself in that situation again and you are finished.

If you can sleep easy and trust him out of your sight, that is.

A wedding can be cancelled or postponed.

lottieandmia Fri 06-Sep-13 12:15:29

I'd be wondering whether this was not just a one off tbh. That would be the problem for me. After all, he must have had other opportunities where there were not witnesses to his behaviour.

A slightly similar thing happened to me in the past but the differences were that the relationship was only a few weeks old, we had not agreed exclusivity yet and also he came clean about it on its own because he wanted to be honest. In that situation I felt we could move on but I was still very hurt when I found out.

blindsidedme Fri 06-Sep-13 12:22:23

SIL was appalled when she found out but didn't know me at the time - I was only introduced to her a couple of months after she found out. Her DH made her promise not to say anything despite her principles, out of loyalty to his brother, DP.

I've had another chance to speak to SIL today, and what I've found out makes my stomach churn - apparently at the time, the conversation between BIL and DP went something like this: DP: "I tapped off with some bird in Barcelona." BIL: "What about Blindsided?" DP: "It's still early days, she's great, but I'm still raw from XP."

...so if he wasn't sure of his feelings for me then, why did he tell me that we were exclusive and he loved me??!

SIL as tried to assure me that it wasn't long after that that DP DID become totally sure of his feelings for me, realised I wasn't going to play him like his XP did and deeply regretted being such a fool. She says she's sure he's been 100% devoted to me since and if he slipped up again, she would know about it, because the three of them are thick as thieves (either that, or DP's the best liar in the world, which I'm not ruling out!)

WipsGlitter Fri 06-Sep-13 13:24:17

I'm not sure about all this at three months it's first flush of happiness, loves young dream bollocks. How many times would you have seen him (on dates) in those three/four months? Had you slept together?

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 06-Sep-13 13:27:41

"so if he wasn't sure of his feelings for me then, why did he tell me that we were exclusive and he loved me??!"

Because he's a liar who says what he thinks will get him the result that he wants?

blindsidedme Fri 06-Sep-13 13:28:45

Yes, we were sleeping together at that point - when we first started seeing each other we met once or twice a week - four months in we were seeing each other maybe three nights a week.

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 06-Sep-13 13:29:01

And also

"DP: "I tapped off with some bird in Barcelona."
BIL: "What about Blindsided?"
DP: "It's still early days, she's great, but I'm still raw from XP."

Urgh

What a creep.

He "tapped off with some bird"?

Really, you can do better than this guy.

MissDD1971 Fri 06-Sep-13 13:29:09

oh get rid straight off.

he's only pissed off cos he's got found out/someone told.

I had an ex-SO like this - he always THOUGHT I was cheating on him. Late night calls on my mobile after I went out (we lived apart) to check I was home (yes, asleep, and he woke me up). Then I found out when we broke up and I'd thought he may have cheated. we had a row and he told me (it was when he was away with a friend) and he thought I'd never find out so he didn't tell me. when I asked why he didn't tell me at the time it was "because he thought I'd dump him" - damned right - I'd have had good reason.

MissDD1971 Fri 06-Sep-13 13:30:15

also - he's cheated and lied. if he'd cheated but THEN admitted it, I'd be tempted to give him another chance, IF all were well.

MissDD1971 Fri 06-Sep-13 13:33:07

Just read about him ditching his girlfriend when she'd cheated. This guy's a hypocrite too then.

UGH. poor you.

Pantone363 Fri 06-Sep-13 13:33:22

When someone tells you who they are, listen.

blindsidedme Fri 06-Sep-13 13:49:51

Yes, it's the "tapped off with some bird" comment that's really haunting me.

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 06-Sep-13 13:57:22

I'm not surprised.

ofmiceandmen Fri 06-Sep-13 14:00:54

I tapped off with some bird in Barcelona

pretty much says it all.

Was he tapping you at the same time? or was it 'different'.

blindsided he cheated simple and straight. No need to pick the odd excuse in all the responses to justify his actions. Don't believe what you want to believe basically.

Now it's all about whether you can move on with him or not.

Other than the pre-paid deposit and the fear people will talk, what other reason would you not temporarily call off the wedding?
What message are you giving him? oh that's fine you were tapping me then too, I'm ok with that. 2 Years good behaviour and I will forgive. precedent set!

You work with the facts at hand. when you said yes you did not have this information- Now that you know surely you need time to take this into account.

No one can answer the yes or no question, but be kind to yourself, remove all the pressures surrounding it and take your time to heal and come to a decision in your own time.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 06-Sep-13 14:07:54

tapped off some bird....... hmm hmm

Not the most remorseful expression is it? hmm

ofmiceandmen Fri 06-Sep-13 14:14:04

basically your relationship started the day you found out. everything else means nothing.

He wasn't a descent, good guy until he had to admitted it. Because yes, everything in your relationship up to that point was a lie or existed because of a lie.

That was day 1. start the relationship again if you are going to give him a chance.

I've pretty much had a similar experience , with pretty much the same reasons, thankfully I am only 7 months in and so for me the restart button does not have the same consequences.

But I'll be honest it hurts like shit! . can't fathom what you are gong through.

For now - give them a standing ovation, they put on quite a show- must have been very entertaining. (37 years old and quoting Rihanna - that's how bad it got- haha)

I'm giving my P a chance, but we are starting again. Why? - because I believe in second chances as no one is perfect. I have to learn to trust again and that means starting over.

mrsdowneyjnr Fri 06-Sep-13 14:15:10

What a horrible dilemma, although 4 months is the honeymoon period it isn't the deep respectful time that comes after years of a relationship that the OP feels they had reached. A reactive decision is not helpful in this situation and a bit of time and perspective can only help.

Phalenopsis Fri 06-Sep-13 14:21:25

Until I read 'tapped off with some bird' I thought that you had a chance OP (and you might still have a chance because you are not me) but when I read that comment I thought, Ugh! What a delightful chap.

Tapping off? - I'd be telling him to tap off permanently. To me he doesn't sound worth marrying.

Junebugjr Fri 06-Sep-13 14:22:02

So he was telling you it was exclusive and loved you at the time, but then telling other people that its early days and I'm still recovering from xp.
I would be more concerned at this, the blatant lying to you about the status of your relationship.
I'd also be concerned about his rationalisation of the cheating. Well I cheated cos I'm still so hurt etc etc. Is he likely to use other excuses in the future. Only you know him and the relationship well, and if he is willing to work back your trust, I would put the wedding on the back burner until your sure. I would also tell your parents, you need some care and support at the minute by people who unconditionally love you.

KeepCoolCalmAndCollected Fri 06-Sep-13 14:41:03

Still don't do anything rash.
I know from my bitter experience how a terrible break-up can really affect you. Believe me it really can involve people doing things way way out of their true character for a long time afterwards.

He was bragging to his brother?
Ditch the immature shagger.

Loopytiles Fri 06-Sep-13 16:09:18

What a horrible way to talk about it!

Not great that even though he thought you were "great" and had told you he loved you, he felt entitled to have sex with "some bird" (nice sexist language) because he was still upset from his break up.

Would your relationship have developed at all 2 -21/2 years ago at all, had he let you know that you were great (as opposed to loving you) and that you were not exclusive (as opposed to being exclusive) as he still kept his options open 4 months in? What time did HE decide he loved you and want to be "exclusive"? When he proposed?

madmayday Fri 06-Sep-13 16:58:17

Writerwannabe83 see now, you story sits really badly with me. I feel so terribly sorry for the poor woman that you and your sister call your "best friend". Basically, all the closest people in her life (her fiancé and best mates), have basically chosen the path her life should take for her, without giving her all the valid information available so she can make her own decisions. That's the least she deserves after being betrayed by her nearest and dearest. You can try and convince yourself that it's all worked out for the best, but truthfully, you have no idea what could (or perhaps should) have happened if she had been given the truth. I do feel for you - you clearly had split loyalties and your sister put you in a shitty position by telling you - she should have sat on her sordid little secret or confessed to you mutual friend herself, instead of dragging you into it. And I would have told your friend's fiancé to 'fess up or you would. That poor, poor woman. sad

OP - I think, based on what I've written above, you should LTB. They all knew and didn't tell you. You then went on to make life-changing decisions with your life based on a lie, which are going to be pretty humiliating to have to backtrack on. Not fair. In fact, pretty unforgivable in my opinion.

Good luck OP. xxx

perfectstorm Fri 06-Sep-13 17:27:44

I was leaning towards "give him hell, but he may just have got blind drunk and done something incredibly stupid early on and felt appalling ever since, and the longer he didn't tell you the less possible it got..." which IMO would be forgivable, potentially. Especially as none of these people knew you at the time.

But when you said he wasn't telling his friends/family from deep guilt and remorse when wondering what to do, but showing off about deliberately pulling someone else in the most bragging way imaginable... sorry, but this man does not sound husband material.

Right now, he'd never dream of cheating because he's madly in love with you. But marriage is long and life can be stressful. DH and I have fallen in and out of love with one another at least twice. In between, we've at times felt quite resentful and detached from one another. But the basic commitment and friendship and self-respect has always carried us, and the fidelity, through. How on earth can you be sure that this man will do the same, when his fidelity is dependent not on his conscience but on his own emotional needs at the time?

Nora Ephron once said you should never marry a man you wouldn't like to be divorced from, and she was spot on. It isn't about how well he treats a woman he is madly in love with. It's about how he treats someone when things aren't completely plain sailing and joyful, and whether his core identity is kind and respectful and honest.

That's all I can say. Other than I am so, so desperately sorry that this is not the man you thought him.

I would be interested to see what actions the df takes now. If he can work on this - as a weakness in him- not use excuses- then I would listen.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 06-Sep-13 17:44:09

madmayday - my sister didn't tell me what had happened, the only reason I know it happened was because I walked in on them mid-act. It was a very shitty position I was in but I had to weigh up which was worse, keeping quiet and hoping he would never cheat again, or tell my friend.

If I had told my friend it would have ruined her relationship with him, ruined her relationship with my sister and it would also have ruined my relationship with my sister, who I'm very close to and love very much. I doubt whether any of us would have recovered from the news. It would also then have the repercussions of my sister's partner finding out, her relationship breaking up and the effect that would have on their son. That is a whole lot of lives that could be ruined. I had to weigh up whether their drunken mistake was worth causing all that damage and I came to the conclusion that it wasn't. My decision may have been the wrong one but I will just have to live with that now x x

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 06-Sep-13 17:54:58

"I doubt whether any of us would have recovered from the news."

So you basically threw your "best friend" under a bus because of how the news of the shitty way her partner and supposed friend treated her would affect other people.

Poor her sad

Everyone in her life who she thinks loves her is ganged up against her.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 06-Sep-13 17:58:49

I didn't throw her life under a bus. She is married to a very hard working man, who I completely trust is faithful, and they have 2 beautiful children. But thanks for your supportive comments about what was a very difficult time for me. Thank you for making me the "Baddie" in the whole thing, your understanding is much appreciated.

You are perhaps not the baddie alone writerwannabee, but you and your sister and your "friends" husband are baddies together in that sorry saga.

And you are not a friend to that poor woman. angry

I think that's massively unfair to writer wannabe

And it shows how you can't win in this situation. It's shit to be in the know. I don't doubt the ops sil is getting hell too.

LoisPuddingLane Fri 06-Sep-13 19:07:55

drunken mistake

There's that word again. A mistake, as most people would interpret it, is when you are doing something with the best of intentions but for some reason you get it wrong. Screwing your best friend's fiancé shows no good intent at all. That was not a mistake, but a deliberate act of sabotage, and really quite nasty.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 06-Sep-13 19:18:34

You're right Lois - I have absolutely no idea what was going through my sister's mind. Nothing will ever excuse what they did. At the end of the day I had to choose between my friend and my sister and it wasn't an easy choice. If it had been any other girl he'd slept with I would have told my friend immediately, but because it was my sister, it just wasn't that straight forward. I hate them both for putting me in this situation. I bet they don't even think about it anymore and I'm the one who has the burden of it sad

LoisPuddingLane Fri 06-Sep-13 19:43:11

I expect they do think about it but you do seem to be carrying the burden of it. What a horrible situation for you to be in. I expect it will come out one day - these things have a tendency to. And with three of you holding the secret, the likelihood is increased.

Letsadmitit Fri 06-Sep-13 20:02:13

Writerwababe. I think you did the right thing.

I am perhaps too old but I think what you did was very generous (yeah, go on, flame me too). He asked you to give him a chance and he made the best use of it. And with that everyone and everything was saved.

If you had told his fiance you would have destroyed her as she wouldn't be able to trust him or any other man pr woman again. It would have destroyed your friendship, it would have destroyed your relationship with your sister, and oh well everything would have gone down the drains just for the sake of maintaining the virtue of "truth"

I remember a phrase by Iris Murdoch that said something like "truth will make us free, but it won't necessarily make us happy" you choose hapiness at the cost of carryng that lie on your shoulders.

OP, I have never found it difficult to get dates, and every single relationship I have had has been serious and committed. I think of all thise man as wonderful lovely lovely induviduals. The seven of them proposed yes, I am that old), I only said "yes" once. Which IMO proves that you can always find another man but you may not necessarily love him more than you loved the previous one, even when you no longer have feelings for the previous one.

Admittedly, I am now divorced (at my request) but I have no regrets either about marrying him or divorcing him, I got many happy years and a son I adore out of that relationship.

So, what I am trying to say is that if you love this man you owe it to yourself to examine the situation and trying to find what really happened and why, and armed with those answers then decide whether you can live with that of not. you can try Relate, you can allow him to explain himself once you feel you could cope with it. But do NOT walk away with out talking to him as I can assure you that if you writeoff the relationship wighout giving him a chance to talk, you will be plagued with "what ifs?" For many years to come. And believe me, that is far more painful than giving him a chance even if that chance is only used for you to ppen your eyes and convince yourself you don't want him to your side.

MimiSunshine Fri 06-Sep-13 20:10:05

Don't make any rash decisions. He cheated on you which is awful and you found out in an awful way. BUT you have been together 3 years and so far been very happy.

If you'd found out back then you'd have been gutted but your feelings after finding out now are as if he'd cheated on you now which are infinitely stronger.

I'm guessing in the cold light of day, cheating on you and realising he'd been just as bad as his ex was sickening for him and made him realise he really loved you and never wanted you to find out.

It's not exactly fairy tale but they're made up stories not real life and sometimes people do stupid things. But it doesn't make them bad people or always "a cheater"

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Fri 06-Sep-13 20:12:28

This morning OP you said you're so broody it's ridiculous.

I know age is an important consideration but if this is the chief reason for staying with your fiance please don't let time clocked up with him somehow outweigh any warning bell ringing in your head.

Whch reminds me do get yourself checked for STI (and he should too).

Letsadmitit Fri 06-Sep-13 20:17:54

Oh I agree with that, do not have children until you are 300% certain you want this or any other man in your life forever. Even if you are married to him.

JoinYourPlayfellows Fri 06-Sep-13 20:22:51

That reads in my Threads I'm On as

"do not have children until you are 300"

I think the advice not to worry too much about the "biological clock" is good, but that might be pushing it a bit grin

Hope you are OK blindsided and that you save some friends with you that are uninvolved with this and can pour you a drink and keep you company.

Junebugjr Fri 06-Sep-13 22:26:54

Writerwannabe - I think it takes a special sort of arsehole to shag his fiance's best friend. What you all did - basically decide which way her life would go, was completely morally wrong and self serving as to not cause trouble to all of you, I find it sickening. I have a twin who I'm very close to, but I can't imagine under any circumstances I would stand by and watch a loved friend hitch her wagon to this sort of man. I can imagine in the shock of the circumstances you would be persuaded to stay quiet, but it must be very awkward when all together.
Hope you are with friends OP.

Writerwannabe83 Fri 06-Sep-13 23:01:03

Surprisingly it isn't that awkward anymore. It was over 6 years ago, we have all grown up now, our lives have all moved forward with marriages and children etc. it really does feel like water under the bridge. I used to really, really hate being around him, but that has passed. What he did was a really shitty thing, my sister too, and I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. He never asked me to keep it quiet, like I said, I didn't confront him about it for 3 months, he didn't even know that I knew. We talked about it a lot and I made the decision I did. I can't change it now, there's no point beating myself up about it, the whole thing was just awful.

rek999 Sat 07-Sep-13 02:14:19

Urgh, I'm gutted for you, I really am. It's a horrible situation. If it were me, I'd be walking. Don't think I'd be able to cope with the story of how we got together being in tatters. Good luck

Lazyjaney Sat 07-Sep-13 06:41:25

I think this sort of last hurrah at the start of a big new relationship is more common than you'd think, but most people keep schtum and don't brag about tapping off. That to me makes the difference here.

Also those pious types crapping on wannabe, I wonder what they would actually do in her situation.

cloudskitchen Sat 07-Sep-13 08:24:22

To op, I have already given an opinion up thread and I hope you are ok.

Writerwannabe83 what an awful position you were in. I can quite honestly say that I have no idea what I would have done in your situation.

HollyShort Sat 07-Sep-13 08:41:16

I'm so sorry you're going through this OP. take your time and don't rush into any decisions.

writer how do you know he or your sister have always been faithful? You only found out because you caught them. They would not have told you otherwise. My grandma always said that real love was being able to tell someone the worst of you and they loved you anyway, you've all stolen the chance of your friend finding real love and I hope that she never finds out that her marriage is a total sham.

AllOverIt Sat 07-Sep-13 08:43:23

What an awful situation sad it would be a deal breaker for me, even though it would break my heart. You both need to get yourself checked out health-wise at the very least. I don't think I could get past it.

Be kind to yourself. Stop worrying what other people will think. It's him that's the fool, not you

Writerwannabe83 Sat 07-Sep-13 08:56:38

Thanks Cloud and lazyjaney for your support.

Holly - I don't know they have always been faithful, all I can do is hope. Like I said, if it had been some random girl he had slept with I would have told my friend straight away, but it just wasn't that simple. If my sister hadn't have been in a relationship and had a child, then who knows, maybe I would have said something. I guess I just didn't want to break up my sister's family on what I only hope was a one-off drunken mistake. They both did a really shitty thing but at the time I felt like I had no choice but to keep quiet and I also hope she never finds out what they did. I'm sure she won't, I doubt they have any intention of telling her.

I appreciate that some people may not have agreed with decision I made, but until it actually happens to you and you know such an awful secret which means your loyalties are split between two people who mean everything to you, it can be very easy to judge from the sidelines.

perfectstorm Sat 07-Sep-13 09:00:23

Wannabe I don't think you were in a position to win, whatever you did. Horrible situation and not one of your making. Life is not as easy as it looks when living it, and I don't think the judgement of you is fair, either. You didn't do anything wrong and the sinning party was your own sister.

HollyShort Sat 07-Sep-13 09:31:15

I'm sorry if you feel that you're being got at writer, you have been put in an awful situation by the pair of them and you've certainly given your loyalty to the wrong people. That you could be a bridesmaid at such a sham of a marriage just beggars belief. I think what has got mine and others backs upside the way your original post glossed over the hideous betrayal and presented it as being all wonderful now and no harm done. What would you do if your friend told you she had doubts about his fidelity? I highly doubt you'd tell her the truth about him so in reality the poor girl has no one she can trust.

Writerwannabe83 Sat 07-Sep-13 09:39:25

Like I said, it wasn't easy being bridesmaid but what option did I have? Just tell her I didn't want to do it and not give a reason why? They got married 2 years after the betrayal had occurred, it would have seemed a bit illogical that I'd suddenly tell her then when I'd already decided to keep quiet and had done for that period of time?

narcyoneyouare Sat 07-Sep-13 09:44:12

Same thing happened to me OP - years on I still think about it and it still cuts me up.

If I'd known how much it would effect me and for how long, I'd have ended it when I found out. So sorry x

Writerwannabe83 Sat 07-Sep-13 09:49:12

That sounds awful Narcy - does your DH/DP know how much it still hurts you or do you not really talk about it? x

ghostmummy Sat 07-Sep-13 23:20:19

Try and make it work if you love each other, if that is the thing that makes you stronger and the worst that you go through you will have a great future. Marriage is hard, relationships are hard, but if the foundation is there get through it !

JoinYourPlayfellows Sun 08-Sep-13 08:09:11

Marriage is not hard.

Good relationships are easy.

Don't be convinced to live a pointlessly difficult life keeping a relationship going because you think they are suppose to be "hard work".

AllOverIt Mon 09-Sep-13 06:12:36

How are you OP?

blindsidedme Mon 09-Sep-13 09:06:22

An update: I ended the relationship. I wasn't sure what I was going to do until he came round to pick up some of his stuff at the weekend, but seeing him clarified things - he felt like a stranger to me and there's no going back.

My wonderful friends and family have made me realise it's not too late to start again and I deserve better than his deceit, however much he regrets it. Better to walk away now than when I'm tied to him through marriage, kids and a mortgage - we're only renting at the moment and I have a career a love which gives me financial independence.

God, I can't believe how pragmatic I'm being about this. The realisation I've come to is if I stay with him I'll always be second guessing his every move and I just can't live like that - as much as it hurts to leave him, I just know it will hurt for even longer if I go on knowing what he's done.

I'm coming down with a really bad cold now and physically feel horrendous, but I know I'll get through this.

cloudskitchen Mon 09-Sep-13 09:09:39

You are very strong. Well done. That can't have been easy x

JoinYourPlayfellows Mon 09-Sep-13 09:32:25

Wow, well done for being so clear in your own mind what you want.

I think I would still be hoping there was a wand somebody could wave that could make it never have happened.

MN Relationships board does a good line in supporting people through breakups, so keep posting if you want to smile

AnyFucker Mon 09-Sep-13 09:41:02

Well done for being so clear that this was something that you would never have been able to brush under the carpet

Silverfoxballs Mon 09-Sep-13 09:52:05

I think you did the right thing. I think you would have spent your entire married life on edge.

When it comes to sibling loyalty one of my sisters has appalling behaviour and even I who tried to still love her cannot have anything to do with her anymore.

AllOverIt Mon 09-Sep-13 10:03:15

Wow! Well done OP. Hope you feel better soon smile

MissDD1971 Mon 09-Sep-13 15:21:37

OP trust me you made the right decision. Good luck. Can't have been easy to end it.

DownstairsMixUp Mon 09-Sep-13 15:27:53

Well done OP, I can imagine you do feel awful but time is a great healer! I totally agree with the choice you made, I hope you find someone in time who deserves you!

lottieandmia Mon 09-Sep-13 17:44:46

I admire you for being so strong OP, well done thanks

Hissy Mon 09-Sep-13 19:49:10

Well done.

I'm sure life will find it's way of making all this up to you!

saffronwblue Tue 10-Sep-13 00:15:10

Well done OP. It is no longer relevant to you but this will send a very strong and interesting message to DP's whole group who kept the secret, about what is important and what your values are.

Letsadmitit Tue 10-Sep-13 08:04:34

I am still wondering what was the hidden agenda of the SIL and friend who sought to inform you about this on the night of your engagement party. Why so late and why on that night? I wouldn't want that woman anywhere near to me if I were you.

But good luck in rebuilding your life in the next months. It is not going to be easy but I am a firm believer that things happen for a reason and that reason is normally the best one in the long term. So wait and see, you just avoided something that could have caused a lot of damage or there something much better for you waiting to happen in the future.

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