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I don't know what to do

(9 Posts)
OrganisedChaos24 Sun 01-Jan-17 20:42:01

Hello please bare with me this is going to be long but I feel so confused.

I have a partner, we've been engaged a year together 7. Got together when I was 17 him 19, fell pregnant with my first baby more or less straight away. We have four children now. I also have anxiety disorder and a history of depression. I thought my partner was the most amazing man alive I loved him more than anything and trusted him 100% i was certain he was the one. Shortly after my first baby was born I suffered PND. My partner and I lived with my parents at this time too.

One day when she was about 6 weeks, My partner left his phone at home when he went out and he got a text from a "friend" I saw the first part of it when the phone lit up and it didn't seem friendly so I opened it up. (I know I shouldn't of) and I found lots of texts from this girl he said was just a friend. They were sexts and quite filthy. I felt absolutely destroyed I'd just had his baby and had PND and the man I thought would never ever hurt me, did. I confronted him when he came home and he said he never meant it, it was all just a joke and he was sorry and wouldn't do it again. I said I forgave him as living at home I didn't want my parents to know and I didn't want to be left on my own either. He told me he wouldn't speak to her anymore and nothing happened. Paranoia took over and every time he went out I had a panic attack and whenever he wasn't around I would check
His phone and I then found out he was still talking to her but nothing dirty from what I could see, but when I asked if he was he lied and said he wasn't. She got a different job and they lost contact, another girl he made friends with and asked me if they could swap numbers to which I said no I couldn't trust him because of before, he then tells me about six months later she asked him out but he said no. So that's two girls, one he supposedly turned down and one he definitely lied about.

Fast forward things improve. We get our own place, had more children. I became very isolated though, lost all confidence and self esteem, hated being on my own and panicked whenever he went out. I felt I had to do everything for him to be perfect so he wouldn't leave or cheat again. I had to be good enough. If I ever upset him I was convinced he would leave or cheat. It didn't help he used to say "it's in the past aren't you over it now"

Another time he hurt me was when I was pregnant with my son, third baby. Thought things were amazing again, felt great between us. And then when looking through recent pics he'd taken of the kids while we were in hospital waiting on the baby to wriggle so I could go home, I found saved pictures of other women off a website if you know what I mean. So again I felt not good enough and hurt. Again he thought it wasn't that much of a big deal.

Since my last baby, he's really tried. If it wasn't for the history he would be a really great partner and he's a good dad. He's never been great at showing his romantic side or anything but I've just learned to accept that, some days I would feel he is the most amazing man and we are perfect for each other. Especially as we are now engaged.

Lately my anxiety has been easier to manage, I'm doing well and I feel more confident in myself I feel like I'm finding myself all over again but I'm left with niggles and doubts. I'm beginning to realise I did everything to make him happy, so he won't leave or be upset or think badly of me, I lived for his approval and validation and took responsibility for his happiness but now I'm realising that's now how it should be? I feel unhappy and I don't think I've ever got over the things that hurt me. He adores me and loves me very much and I know he wouldn't do anything like that again he learned from it but I'm worried it's too little to late and now that I'm finding myself again and feeling more sure of myself and my self worth, I'm realising I don't love him like I think I did? It was all a plaster so I didn't have to deal with the hurt or face being alone. I don't want to leave and regret it as it will break his and my children's hearts but I don't want to stay and regret it either. Something feels like it's missing. I don't know if I need to work harder or what I'm so confused.

Thankyou to anyone who got this far.

WynterBlossom Sun 01-Jan-17 20:46:30

How old are you OP?

OrganisedChaos24 Sun 01-Jan-17 20:47:24

I'm 24 he's 27. Children are 6,4,2 and 8 months x

Underthemoonlight Sun 01-Jan-17 20:52:25

Op your very young to have four kids in fairly quick concession of each other especially if you had your doubts about things, who's idea was the DC? Have you spoken to him about how you feel?x

OhHolyJesus Sun 01-Jan-17 20:53:51

Do you think relationship counselling could help? You could talk through all this honestly with support from a professional and try to forgive and forget the past. You have a lot invested already so if you don't think it could resolve anything it might be time to move on, but perhaps worth a try before you make that decision.

OrganisedChaos24 Sun 01-Jan-17 20:56:27

My first wasn't planned. My middle two were planned, I wanted a big family and them close in age. My youngest was another surprise. I love my children and sometimes I think they're the only reason I'm still here sometimes. I have spoke to him sort of but whenever I try and discuss why I feel the way I do (the cheating and hurt) he brushes it off and tells me to stop being irrational and overthinking all the time and I should be over it all by now. I was always so scared of losing him after the first incident and it's only recently I've been able to think about how he might not be the one anymore, I feel like I was in some sort of hazy blur before and just doing whatever he wanted so he'd be happy and I wouldn't be alone but I never saw it like that.

AttilaTheMeerkat Sun 01-Jan-17 21:14:00

What do you get out of this relationship now?.

You also met this man when you were very young and had no real life experience behind you. Presumably too you met him at a time when you were at a low point yourself.

Counselling solely for your own self would be helpful to also further improve your own low self esteem and self worth.

TBH I would not stay for the children. Doing that will also teach them poor lessons on relationships. Do not become 25 and be in the same position as you are now.

Would you want any of your children as adults to have a relationship like yours has been to date?. He has cheated on you and has shown you no remorse for his actions. These are not and have never been the actions of a loving and decent man to you. He has instead outright dismissed your very real concerns. He does not want for you to deal with your very real hurt. This is over really and has been since the first time he cheated.

He is also NOT a good dad to his children because he has treated you as their mother like the proverbial rubbish by cheating. I think you are right in asking yourself why you have stayed to date and it is likely because of the children and your not wanting to be on your own. TBH you are pretty much on your own in this relationship now because he only cares about one thing and that is he.

OrganisedChaos24 Sun 01-Jan-17 21:22:07

Thankyou for such honest replies. My mum stayed with my dad for me and no I don't want that for children. I also don't want to hurt them by separating them from him because they love him so much and he loves them very much.

I feel very lonely some days and wanting more. Then others I think no he's a good man he's trying now things are better now I should just stop moaning and wanting something different.

I don't like the thought of him finding a new partner and I suppose I'm scared of leaving him and then wanting him back because I made the wrong decision. I do love him, but I'm not sure I'm in love with him. It would be easier to walk away if I didn't have the children as I could cut all contact with him then not have to face him after breaking up. I don't even know how I would tell him or the children he's certain we'll be together forever but I don't find myself excited about getting married or anything.

I feel lost if I'm honest.

Underthemoonlight Sun 01-Jan-17 21:38:24

I agree it sounds like you got together so young you never really got to experience other relationships.

Has he actually cheated that you know of or has it just been messages?

If you know you wouldn't be with him now if it wasn't for the children then you've got your answer, don't put yourself through all these ups and downs for the kids you can successfully coparent. It doesn't have to be this way it is if you don't want it to be, the decision however is solely down to you, I'm not going to lie it's a big step.

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