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Karma - brickbats fully deserved

(6 Posts)
Totaltotalidiot Sun 09-Nov-14 14:19:03

So, I fully expect to get some tough responses to this, but here we go.... For the last ten years I had been having a full blown affair with someone quite a bit older than me. It started when I was in my early 20s and he his late 30s. He was my boss at the start - such a cliche. It was exciting, volatile, passionate - again all the usual cliches. He was married but separated, and subsequently divorced. I have been with my BF the whole time. Throughout the ten years, the affair was on and off, though more on than off, but extremely volatile with lots of fighting. I got pregnant eight years ago by him, and ended up having a termination, which I have never forgiven myself for. I also struggled to ever really talk to him about it and it was a major, major problem between us and the cause of many fights. He had a young daughter and professed undying love to me, but said he would only be with me when she was a lot older. At the time, I think I would have left my BF for him, but things changed over the last few years and as he was now 'ready' to be with me properly, but I wasn't prepared to leave my BF. I know this is classic grass is greener, cake and eat it - and had anyone told me they were in this situation I would have given them v short shrift indeed. Anyway, about nine months ago, he told me he couldn't go on like this. He wanted to get married and described it in so much detail. But I still wasn't prepared to leave my BF so that was that. We continued to work together, and I felt that at least I had him in my life like that. Then, eight weeks ago he died. It turns out he had cancer and had been diagnosed five months ago. He had felt unwell for some time, but despite lots of nagging refused to see a doctor until it was too late. He told no-one and died alone, and apparently in a great deal of pain. He went through rounds of treatment on his own. It is just so unbelievable that he has gone and I am just numb with shock. His family have been amazing as they knew us as a couple and have been just lovely to me. But worse to come - and here's the karma bit - at the funeral a woman turned up who I had always suspected him of seeing at the same time as me. He had always denied it - in furious terms and was incensed anytime I raised it. But I knew deep down. And if I am honest, the lies he told about this relationship was one of the main reasons I didn't trust him and couldn't commit properly to him. It transpires that he was indeed seeing her for about six months early on in 'our' relationship. Seeing her made me feel sick to my stomach. I am so full of all sorts of feelings and so confused. I really do know that I deserve this - I have behaved extremely badly - particularly to my BF who is one of the most lovely and true people I have ever met, and i have just treated him appallingly. But my feelings are of overwhelming loss, of 'perhaps I should have committed years ago', of 'you bastard, you cheated on me' even though that is exactly what I was doing. I am angry and ashamed and shocked at myself, and not sure how to move forward. Some days I don't want to move forward at all and don't deserve to. I also know I made this bed and I now have to lie in it. I am so full of anger, guilt, remorse, loss and everything is just so grim.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sun 09-Nov-14 14:30:28

I'm sorry for your loss, Total, you're obviously grieving.

'Karma' is spouted about endlessly on here as if it's a real thing; I don't believe in it. I believe in conscience and trying not to hurt people. Obviously, having an affair is not an ideal situation and it sounds as if you and OM just never got your thoughts/shit together to enable you to be together. If you'd both really wanted to though, you would have been ready, you just would have done it because not being together would not have been an option for either of you.

You don't have the moral high ground just because OM lied because so did you - to your boyfriend. You carried on with the affair, neither of you were committed to either other or anybody else. I'm not so sure that he would have left his young family; he quite possibly said it because he was certain that you wouldn't go for it. Do you think that's possible? There's an old adage, "Take what you want... and pay for it". I think that's true.

I think what you're feeling is sadness at the fact that he has finally left you, you will never be together now and that you were never acknowledged as meaning anything to him formally... he had a wife - and he also was with another woman at the time of his death. I can imagine how desperately sad you must feel about that.

What to do now? Get some counselling, I think, to deal with your feelings. You are unlikely to get much support here because of the affair side of things, some posters won't see past that. You DID have a real relationship and you DID care for each other. I think you must hang on to that thought whilst you get through the next days. People are not perfect and they do very imperfect things. The priority now is you and your feelings as he is no longer here to consider.

LyingWitchInTheWardrobe Sun 09-Nov-14 14:31:48

... also your termination, OP. It may hit you thinking of 'what might have been' and possibly still 'having a part of him'.

Can you find somebody in RL to speak to? thanks

SelfLoathing Sun 09-Nov-14 14:33:29

I think a primary source of your pain is three fold - firstly, the fact he has died and you are grieving as you would for any one close who died - grief is extremely painful and more so when unexpected; secondly, the fact he has died and you have the "what if I'd left to be with him" regrets - the grass is greener option is closed off; thirdly, the discovery of this other woman (always painful even if you are an OW) COUPLED with the fact you can't ask him about it.

I don't really have anything constructive to offer save to say that time usually sorts most things out so you will just have to grin and bear it until the passage of time dulls the pain and your life moves on. No different from normal grief really.

Affairs always cause pain somewhere but sounds like you have just had treble that dumped in your lap.

The older I get and the more I see of life, the more I am inclined to the view that once a man has started to cheat, he doesn't stop. An OW is very unlikely to be the only OW whether that is at the same time or in a series.

I was an OW and the MM I was involved with had lots of other affairs. Initially he denied it. Eventually he fessed up to various ones along the way.

I think it was james goldsmith who said a man who marries his mistress creates a vacancy.

It may not feel like it now, but it's a good thing you didn't marry him. Imagine you were a grieving widow at the funeral and had discovered his was cheating on you during your marriage.

Totaltotalidiot Sun 09-Nov-14 15:19:21

Thank you both - so much. I absolutely agree re taking the moral high ground, as all he was doing to me was what I was doing to my boyfriend. Such a double standard but I hurt so much. He was divorced v early on - perhaps six months after things had started and he definitely wanted to keep things between us private for the first few years - same time as he was seeing ths other woman and god knows now how many others - but for the last four or five, our roles had reversed and he kept asking my to leave my boyfriend, and for us to be together properly. But yes, we didn't get our shit together and I was too much of a coward. I didn't think I was this type of person, but I realise that I have been kidding myself for years that I was the one being wronged, when actually it was me making all the bad, bad, bad decisions.
I want to find a way to move forward and make better decisions and be a better person. Thank you so much for listening.

Empha14 Sun 09-Nov-14 20:53:52

I'm sorry but you will get 0 sympathy from me.

Your poor BF - he has unknowingly wasted 10 years of his life with a deceitful lying self absorbed person. Shame on you.

This isn't Karma - this is just you feeling sorry for yourself. Do the decent thing and tell your BF so he can go and be with someone who deserves him.

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