Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, please see our domestic violence webguide and/or relationships webguide, which can point you to expert advice and support.
Men and Regrets(44 Posts)
Hi just looking for any opinions or experiences really, it has been said to me on a few occasions that men tend to have regrets a lot later in the separation/Divorce process and sometimes only come to realise this when its too late.
I am curious to know if there is some truth in this as i know as a women the process is incredibly hard in the beginning and has just started to get easier so i am now starting to see a way forward to the future, but someone has told me that men process everything in a different way and tend to have the impact/hurt or regret later on.
Anyone had this happen to them ?
Yes a relative who is now an OAP is now expressing regret. I think mainly due to the fact young men are naturally driven so much by their sex drive that when it all calms down they really see the damage they have caused to others.
Hmmmm, watching with interest! I instigated divorce proceedings a few months ago after STBXH left for an OW. I am finding it incredibly difficult, even though I'm the petitioner. Have no idea how STBXH is feeling at the moment, but wonder how he will feel further down the line. Hope he's bloody miserable!
Don't think there's going to be a definitive answer here. Think a lot depends on the circumstances & the personalities involved
My ex said 'I had the prefect life and I threw it away.' And he caused an immense amount of suffering. But its not relevant - I moved on. I don't think you are - but please don't dwell on it. You are free now and it doesnt matter how he feels anymore.
I have read that men and women deal with divorce, separation and any break up really in distinctly different ways.
Apparently women start off miserable and heal over time, whereas men start off relieved and excited/optimistic but go on to repent at leisure.
I guess they'd be regretful and asking for another chance just as their wife or girlfriend is moving on happily!
It's probably generalised rubbish, but has been borne out by lots of my friends.
I think that what you are saying is very generalised, it (as others have said) depends on the person and I also believe that it depends on the situation you are left and what support network you have around you.
I waited ten years for an apology and an acknowledgement that he was indeed a twat.
There's no closure, thats in the movies. You never know and it doesn't matter. Your good and happy life is not dependent on anything to do with his.
Generally, men may regret later on, some wont.
But don't base your decision or well on how soon and how much someone else will regret theirs.
If he's not right for you, he's not right for you, regardless of whether he will feel intense remorse and sadness a second later or live a happy life never to regret anything.
It should read.. "don't base your decision on how soon and how much..."
Thankyou for the replies, the common theme seems to be don't worry if he has regrets as its no longer my problem and of course your all right in that respect it really won't matter as i will probably never know anyway.
I think the question of regrets are for my own self esteem really that my Husband of 18 yrs can just throw everything away for what seems to be no good reason and have no regrets seems so cold and callous to myself and to our family.
Anyway thankyou its interesting to see other peoples take on a situation.
I studied sociology for a while years ago and there was a study that showed statistically, divorced men are the most likely to describe themselves as unhappy whilst divorced women are the most likely to describe themselves as happy. The happiest men were those married with 2.4. The unhappiest were women married with 2.4
Has anyone experienced their ex admitting any regret when they realised the grass was not greener and realised the family life they threw away was indeed a good life compared to what they found on the other side of the fence.
Interested to hear any stories on this subject.
Just looking for a little bit of a lift as feeling very low and flat having been thrown to the kirb by husband of 18 years .
User, I'm like you in a lot of ways. I would too like my STBXH To suddenly wake up and 'realise'
But what I do know is this. After what I found out about his antics before he left me 14 weeks ago, I know I couldn't have him back even if he wanted to. He's killed my soul and the heart of what I held dear about him. Yes, proof of his OW & their relationship overlap with my marriage is a deal breaker.
So I filed for divorce yesterday to both our families dismay.
I do hope he feels sorrow and regret one day. Because he's thrown out 19 amazing years because he had his head turned.
I know that I couldn't get over that. So what he feels now or doesn't is irrelevant really.
Hope this makes sense.
But I do believe in karma. So even if he never regrets, what goes around comes around. X
My exW cheated on me. I suspect hell would freeze over before she expressed any regret (at least to me).
I'm very happy she's no longer my partner.. I just wish I could cut all ties but the kids make that impossible.
I suppose its just that need to feel that you did actually mean something of value to someone who so cruelly rejects you. The need to feel that you are worth someones regret.
a bit deep i suppose but really stuck in moving on and feel worthless.
I know how you feel user. I still struggle with the rejection. My councillor is really helping me address this. Have you tried counselling? X
A longstanding friend of my parents (both families went on holiday together, I grew up with the kids like cousins, etc) left his family when the kids were in their teens. He had been cheating and moved straight in with the OW, barely saw his own kids (OW also had children and it was like he swapped them in like substitutes in a football match) was a dick about money, the full nine yards.
His wife and kids were devastated. They went from comfortable middle class lifestyle to a succession of tiny rented flats, the kids struggled with school, dropped out of uni, and everyone was pretty chaotic for a while.
But they survived. The kids returned to study as mature students, the mother met and married a wonderful guy and they all hang out together like grownups these days.
The husband, otoh, is miserable as fuck. He feels stuck with the OW and is too scared of being on his own to leave, he has no money (everything got swallowed up in the divorce) his career has stalled (incidental but satisfying) and he never sees his kids or grandchildren. My father reports that he is a tragic, bitter man with health problems and a chip on his shoulder, who totally regrets his actions and (although he never admits this) knows that he is the architect of his own misery and is driven crazy by it..
I'm friends with the kids, and they say that this outcome would have been satisfying to know at the time of the divorce, but now they've all moved on, it's just pathetic. They would genuinely rather he was happy than like he is, but there's nothing they can do.
I definitely believe in the mid life crisis. I believe that's what mine is going through. And from all the google searching I did in the first few weeks, it seems the leaver rarely ends up happy. X
My ex left 9 years ago for OW. He had expressed regret not long after leaving and spend the following 6 years trying to get back with me but i declined because he hurt me so much i couldn't be with him again. We had no contact for 2 years then got back in contact last year, we actually had a good talk on the weekend and he is still expressing regret and is miserable, stuck etc and feels he is receiving karma for what he did to me (i don't believe in karma) he's even considered suicide. Continued to confess "how much i mean to him".
It does me no joy knowing he is miserable as i did love him once and he is LOs father. I don't think you should worry about waiting on his regret as some leavers do regret their actions and others don't, some admit it and some don't but you could spend that energy focusing on more important things in life (hope i don't sound harsh). I never expected anything from my ex other than to be a dad to our LO and i do wish him well in life, hopefully he can make the changes needed. Focus on yourself and your life because you seeking an apology and/or regret just gives him a power boost that he is in a way controlling your thoughts. Best of luck xx
My ExH regretted it massively.
Still is regretting now, nearly 7 years on.
Tough. I'd moved on by the time he realised and there was no way I'd ever trust him again anyway.
Recent Ex, no. He's still in the throws of living out his porn fantasies with current OW and I doubt he'll have regrets TBH.
He's not emotionally capable.
It do think it really depends on the individual.
I was the "man" in my previous relationship....I left my ex, relieved it was over, she spent her time miserable and trying to get over me, I spent my time excited meeting other people. I then hit a low & realised what I had let go & we ended back together.
Split now (for good).
I keep trying to explain to a good friend of mine that although she's hoping for her ex to feel guilt, to rethink his choices that by the time he does.....she couldn't care less.
My first DP broke my heart, he left me for someone else, a year later after I met my ex, he told me how he regretted it.....too little too late, I thanked him for apologising but it made no difference to my life, I'd moved on!
I am a man who lives with major regrets. I dumped my uni girlfriend in my mid 20s after 5 years together. I had my head turned by another girl who was superficially "hot". I still felt at that point I was going to be someone special, a music producer and was holding out for someone extra special ... Bjork I think.
My girlfriend at the time was too quiet, a little too plump, not a 10 but she was funny, warm, laid back, sexy and she really loved me, not for who I wanted to be but for who I really was which was a geeky, awkward, lonely boy with delusions of grandeur. I broke her heart.
It took me a while to realise that what I had with her was real and that I did really love her, it was myself I didn't like. I would have tried to reconnect with her but she didn't stay single for long as one of my then best mates swooped in to pick up the pieces and didn't waste anytime locking her down ... he married her. I don't blame him as he could obviously see what I couldn't and he seems to make her happy.
In the end I moved away because it was too painful to see her and him together. Now at 42 I'm still single, I've never had a girls like her again and probably never will. I sometimes look at her facebook but try not to torture myself too much, she is probably more beautiful now that she was then. From the outside you couldn't guess but it's still a huge sore point for me, thinking about what I had and how I blew it. My guess is lots of men especially those still single in their mid 30s and beyond have similar regrets.
The cynical part of me thinks that the reason may be that they are all excited to think they're going to be living the single lifestyle again, staying out all night, drinking with friends, blah blah blah.
Then they realise that oh shit, they can do all that, but who the fuck is going to do the shit work at home? Also, oh no, I have to spend a whole 20% of my salary on my DC? Wahhh... maybe I was better off married...
Of course that's not the case for all men, those who were already doing their fair share of work in the home will probably not be affected like this.
Maybe that's why it's men who are more likely to regret. Women are generally already doing the shit work and it takes only a short time to realise they've just cut their workload significantly by getting rid of a partner who doesn't pull his weight.
Join the discussion
Please login first.