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I know what you'll all tell me, but I don't think I can...

(28 Posts)
pinkbear82 Thu 20-Feb-14 10:44:26

Please go easy on me, I know the clear outstanding consensus will be LTB, but I love him, and I don't want to be alone.

I found out this week my partner has been having what I guess would be called an EA. I confronted him, and he said it had been a few months, nothing had actually happened etc. he promised it would stop, and he was sorry, he had no explanation apart from liking the attention.
As you do once you find something you scrape a bit more. I confronted a 'friend' today after seeing a few things I consider more than friendly. She has promised me nothing is going on. I'm not sure.

We have a 8.5month old dd together. She isn't a great sleeper and I know I am tired and haven't perhaps been at my best, but I know that shouldn't be an excuse.
I don't want to pack up and go, how do you get through this? I don't want to quit.

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 20-Feb-14 10:53:09

You want the truth? You get through it by suppressing your emotions and sticking your head in the sand for long enough until you can kid yourself it didn't really happen. You ignore the sick feeling in your stomach when you see him talking to another woman or a text message comes in late at night or he's a bit late home one night. You keep blaming yourself for not being at your best until your self-esteem withers away and dies completely. You might comfort eat, drink, use credit cards or even find yourself at the GP for a scrip of ADs

And just when you've got through it ...he'll do it again. Because you weren't showing him enough attention. hmm

Welcome to your life. Sorry

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 20-Feb-14 10:54:21

And I make no apologies if that was harsh but I hate to see perfectly nice young women brought low by idiot men. It's a waste.

Agree with Cogito. That is exactly how you get through it and ensure you are not alone. You will feel very lonely though, and constantly blame yourself for not being your best.

NaffOrf Thu 20-Feb-14 10:56:19

I love him, and I don't want to be alone.

But he doesn't love you, I'm afraid. And you already are alone, emotionally.

No one can tell you how to make this better without saying 'LTB', because it's the only thing that will work.

It's not 'quitting' to respect yourself, you know? Staying with someone who treats you with contempt is a much bigger failure.

Indeed. It is a waste.

By staying with a man who doesn't love you you are quitting. Quitting on your life and your right to love and happiness and high self esteem.

pinkbear82 Thu 20-Feb-14 11:07:36

Of course you are all right. And deep down I know it's right as well.
When that is your life already, how do you find the strength to fight against it and come out on top?

CogitoErgoSometimes Thu 20-Feb-14 11:12:15

Call on others for strength if you are struggling. Friends, family, professionals etc. How you come out on top is by asserting yourself and setting very clear boundaries that demand respect. For example, you tell this partner to leave the family for a while.... allow you time to think things through and see if you want the relationship to continue. This achieves a few things. Lets you clear your head and get information. Allows you to 'feel' what life is like solo ... and it could be better than you think. Increases your self-respect and confidence by taking the initiative. And for him.... it might just shit him up a little when he's kipping on some lumpy sofa somewhere and deprived his family.

If you can't leave for yourself, imagine the effect your ongoing misery will have on your child.

Slowly, your self esteem will be ground down because you feel scared of the unknown and you'll become a shell of your former self.

How will you be a role model for her?

BeCool Thu 20-Feb-14 12:02:47

LTB isn't quitting. It's believing in yourself and your child and knowing you deserve better than half truth/half life your P is offering.

FolkGirl Thu 20-Feb-14 12:44:02

I always think that in these situations, staying is the 'quitting' and the 'failure'. Accepting a half life without respect or love is no way to be.

Leaving is the winning and the action that shows/requires strength.

Believe you deserve better (because you do) believe your daughter deserves better (because she does).

As someone said, you are already alone emotionally.

enriquetheringbearinglizard Thu 20-Feb-14 13:14:01

I think you have to take a good hard-cold light of day look at your relationship, your life and the way you're living now.

A direct consequence of your DP looking for emotional support elsewhere is that he's withdrawn that emotion from you and you're lonely. But you're also frightened of being alone. Which is worse? is it being lonely in a relationship, or is it being on your own with your DC?

If there's more between your DP and your 'friend' than either of them are admitting, then you also have trust issues if you stay in this relationship.

I don't know how old you both are, but his reaction is immature. The way you describe events is that you've been understandably tired with a very young child and he's felt neglected and liked finding attention that's been available elsewhere.
If it were me, rather than make the point that I hadn't been at my best, I'd be angry that he wasn't helping with the very dramatic change in our lives that a baby brings and that rather than cherishing and supporting me and our child, he'd had his head turned elsewhere, even if not physically. I would think you have an idea if it's gone that far or not.

You don't really say much about your lives and your relationship before you found all this out, but you do say you love him. Talk to him straight and try to establish if you can overcome it and where you go from here. You may be able to move forward together but a lot will depend on him and re-establishing trust between you both, so you have to prepare yourself also for disappointment if he's not able to put that effort in and do what it takes.

I'm afraid you have to draw on all your inner strength, and be reasonably coldhearted to make him understand you're not a pushover.
That goes for the so called friendly 'friend' as well.

Once you've read through all the comments and points of view on here, you'll start to figure out what's in your own mind, it will help, but ultimately no one else can tell you what you should do, you know your relationship and circumstances best. I hope you have support in RL but if not you will always find some here, whether you try and rebuild or whether you end it and start over.

Surely the trust us totally gone?

pinkbear82 Thu 20-Feb-14 13:26:26

The trust is dented, that's for sure. And will take time to rebuild.

I will have support in rl, but right now my family are going through so,e pretty major things, and I will put a brave face on until I can talk to them properly and not cause more stress at this moment in time.

I think probably from growing up with parents who stuck together even through bumpy roads, but they always talked and sorted things, and looking at them now they are very happy. I guess that's what I meant by quitting. Without having tried. I owe it to me and my daughter to try. You try and fix something before throwing it away don't you

enriquetheringbearinglizard Thu 20-Feb-14 13:41:44

Very few of us are near perfect and very few never make a mistake.
Having a child should have brought you together and instead in this case it's possibly the catalyst for your DP to seek attention elsewhere.
Now whether this is because he's young/immature and merely had his ego massaged while you're busy with all the boring chore side of life, only you know.

How is day to day life for you both now? How is he behaving towards you, contrite and wanting forgiveness? Is he giving you assurances or at the very back of your mind do you just think he's wriggling at being caught out? We here, can't know these things.

If you feel for sure that he does really love you, then do try and make this work. A lot will depend on his acceptance of his behaviour and his efforts to rebuild and convince you that it's a one off and he's learnt from it.
IMO you can always try and at a later date say it's not working out if you feel it's not. That way may also make you feel stronger in yourself if it comes to it.
Other people react differently and in different circumstances I would react differently from what I've said here. One thing I would say is that don't bottle this up, do get some support, it's not something you should try and work on entirely alone when you're feeling vulnerable.

Cabrinha Thu 20-Feb-14 13:47:57

Who is doing the throwing away though, and who is going the fixing?
You're here trying to get advice...
What's he doing?
I'll hazard fuck all. Or rather - keeping his head down until you get over it.

If you want to try to make it work, I think you need these rules:
1. He had his last chance already, any sign, and that's it
2. He has to make the effort
3. You have to stop thinking this is your fault for being tired, not at your best

Know the saying - if you don't love me at my worst, you don't deserve me at my best?

Honestly, I think you're in for a half life and more of the same, sorry. But if you want to give him the opportunity to fix it, then alongside that make your preparations to leave do that you're feeling strong. For example, see a solicitor / CAB to know your options. If you werent planning to work after maternity leave - time to change your mind.

Good luck.

Logg1e Thu 20-Feb-14 14:03:56

OP I owe it to me and my daughter to try. You try and fix something before throwing it away don't you

I think I've missed the bit where you haven't tried to have a respectful, healthy relationship and where you haven't been a good role model for your daughter. What have you broken that requires you to work sooo hard to fix it?

AnyFuckerHQ Thu 20-Feb-14 14:07:38

I was going to comment but I see cogito has it covered as per

OP, you are letting yourself in for a crappy life. Having a new baby together is meant to be a magical time and your inadequate partner has shit all over it.

pinkbear82 Thu 20-Feb-14 14:12:05

I probably should have know he would, there are signs. This isn't his first dc but is mine.

AnyFuckerHQ Thu 20-Feb-14 14:15:56

why did his other relationships end ?

morley19 Thu 20-Feb-14 14:19:31

pinkbear82

So sorry you're going through this, I can feel the torment you are in through your messages.

I wish I could wave a magic wand to sort it out. I think all you can do is be BRUTALLY honest with yourself - can you see yourself EVER regaining trust in him? Answer it to yourself honestly. If the answer is no then there really is no future, or no future that you should want to be part of. I know it is so hard but if that is how you feel then better to move on now then get 5/10/15 years down the line, look back and think 'if only.' You deserve more.

If it was one of your friends in this position what would you be advising her?

I'm not advising either way what you should (ie leave or stay), am just advising brutal honesty with yourself. If you do that, you will make the right decision. If you ignore what you know deep down then you're living a lie.

One thing I really don't think anyone should do is stay 'just because of the children.' If that is the ONLY reason then it is a mistake for everyone concerned. I think people do this because it is easier than the upheaval of the alternative and they kid themselves it is the right thing. But children are better with two happy parents apart than two together and miserable. I know adults now whose parents only stayed together because of them, they say it is the worst thing they could have done, unpleasant environment for the child to grow up in and then, when the child is old enough and knows what has happened they just feel guilty (that the parents stayed together just because of them). In most cases the parents have split up as soon as the child left home - what a waste of life for everyone - the child just feels guilty and the parents have wasted precious years.

I wish you well and hope you make the right decision for you, I know how tough it will be though xxx

enriquetheringbearinglizard Thu 20-Feb-14 15:49:27

I probably should have know he would, there are signs. This isn't his first dc but is mine

This is new information Pinkbear and could change the advice or comments people offer.

How long had you seen signs for? and what's his relationship history, was he established with his Ex and how is his relationship with his other DC or DCs?

captainmummy Thu 20-Feb-14 19:00:26

How many posts start 'i love him but...', 'he's a great dad, but...', and I don't want to split/married for life/i can fix this?

You can't fix a joint relationship if one doesn't want to make any effort. You can#t do it alone. What you can do is work out how to live, on your own, successfully and happliy.

Dinnaeknowshitfromclay Thu 20-Feb-14 19:13:12

At the time you need him most he does this? He is showing you what he is actually like in letters twenty foot high neon with bells and tinsel and stuffed budgies hanging off! Look up, read, wise up and LTB. I am sorry you have this crap in your life Pinkbear.

whydidthishappen Thu 20-Feb-14 19:25:56

If your parents stuck with together through thick and thin, and taught you to do so, will you be teaching your DD to do the same thing?

Would you want this relationship for her? If not, get out now.
You deserve much better. Sticking it out no matter what only enables poor behavior and encourages a sense of entitlement amongst people.

pinkbear82 Thu 20-Feb-14 19:46:55

Thank you all for kind and harsh words - they all mean a lot.

I don't know what I will do, right now I know I'm not in a good place for decision making. And I think I would be foolish to make big decisions. I need to focus on my family, who will be my support eventually, I need them all to get through the next few weeks and then perhaps I can regroup and really look at everything.

I'm not settling, I am making it clear I will not be used. I did also drop a bit into conversation with mil today. I refuse not to talk about it in rl. I won't shout about it, but I also won't be quiet as that would suit.

Thanks again. winethanks

Lavenderhoney Thu 20-Feb-14 21:08:33

Was it a friend of yours he was messing about with? If anything happened then she is hardly likely to tell you, unfortunately, especially if she is married or in a relationship.

If she is a friend of yours, I would suggest not any more.

I hope he too is wanting to sort things between you and you aren't the one jumping through hoops and giving him more attention. You'll hate yourself, in the end.

Look after your dd, carry on as you are and actions speak louder than words. Look at why his past relationships haven't worked, and if there is a pattern then make decisions on your future as though he is not there. If he is and is desperate to reassure you for a long time and not til Saturday night, then it might be ok. Otherwise, lucky you found out now and not in ten years of misery and blaming yourself for his unsupportive ways.

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