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Did I drive him to cheat

(29 Posts)
crossroads1 Mon 11-May-20 21:09:35


I’ve been having some strange throughs lately. 2 years ago my ex cheated on me and left me for someone else he met at work and is still with her. At the time when this all happened I was happy to be out of the relationship and worked on bettering myself but for the last few weeks I can’t shake this feeling and I almost feel guilty and thinking it’s my fault that he cheated.

At times our relationship was good but when it was bad it was terrible. He was verbally abusive and did put his hands on me once or twice. His put his hand around my throat and grabbed my arm so hard that I came up in bruises. But recently I keep thinking of the ways he was good - he did a lot for me and made me feel like I’m his world in the beginning. He was with me when I found out my dad had cancer and even bought me a puppy for a birthday. He did grand gestures but then our relationship became toxic. I also spoke to him wrongly and turned into someone I wasn’t.

He started to use a lot of class a drugs as well as steroids. But I just wonder did I deserve all of this, did I drive him to cheat and why am I forgetting all the horrible things he did and only remembering the good times? Even now I feel like I’m under some manipulation which is what he always used to do.

I’m with someone else now and our relationship is very balanced. We never swear at eachother or are verbally abusive. I would never speak to him the way I did with my ex because we respect eachother. But he doesn’t do the grand gestures or the intense back and forth that my ex did. Have I been so brainwashed to think that’s what a healthy relationship was? Why am I even feeling guilty over his cheating as lord knows I could have done the same in our crappy relationship but I never strayed!why do women feel as if it’s always their fault??

OP’s posts: |
SandyY2K Mon 11-May-20 21:24:48

No, you didn't drive him to cheat. You should be glad you aren't with him anymore.

He was violent and abusive.

Sugartitss Mon 11-May-20 21:32:20

not your fault op

Idontknow23 Mon 11-May-20 21:36:23

Do you have any form of anxiety? Maybe you are thinking these thoughts because of this. I am an empathetic person etc but no you didn't cause him to cheat! Drugs adn steroids would have turned him abusive. Let it go, leave it where it was, you did not make him cheat

crossroads1 Mon 11-May-20 21:39:18

I do feel anxious sometimes when I think of how we ended. He was awful and horrible. But then I think of things he did like buying me my dog (although he swiftly abandoned the both of us less than 6 months later) I can’t believe how much a person can change and can’t help thinking was I to blame sad he seems happy with his new gf after the affair so maybe I was the problem. She must have been better than me as he left me

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category12 Mon 11-May-20 21:49:04

I'm not sure why you're thinking like this - he got physical with you and was abusive. Putting his hands round your neck was very dangerous - it's easy to accidentally go too far and kill someone that way. Maybe you should look into counselling and work through what's going on? Did you do the Freedom Programme or anything like that, following the break-up?

Anyone can do big gestures - it's the day to day that matters.

Idontknow23 Mon 11-May-20 21:52:07

He probably changed because the drugs made him change! And the steroids don't they make men angry and have small willy's and grow boobs. Maybe he seems happy with her because she gives him an easy life, doesn't mind drugs and has no standards, maybe he grabs her behind closed doors and it's not what it seems. He probably thinks the same about you too how happy you are now (and should be) at the end of the day he might have done the odd nice gesture but anyone can buy a dog he couldn't treat you nice in general. We all have regret with past issues and shoulda, woulda, coulda but no matter how toxic it got he should not have hurt you or cheated on you! It really could be anxiety making you have these irrational thoughts so you could speak to your Dr, I know everyone jumps to say go Dr's but I do think anxiety makes you think random things and play out scenarios, yeah you shouted and said horrible things but it is not your fault about the cheating and you are so better off without a junkie! Your life would be shit.

crossroads1 Mon 11-May-20 21:55:02

Not sure what the freedom programme is. And don’t know why I’m making excuses for him but when he put his hand around my throat he stopped almost immediately after realising what he was doing. I’ll add we were in the middle of an awful fight where I was right up in his face screaming at him about the other woman. I know it doesn’t excuse his behaviour.. so why am I forgetting all the bad and only thinking of the gestures he did? I haven’t been able to see my partner either due to lockdown we are in a LDR and sometimes my mind keeps wandering to the past. I’ve had a stressful year with a death in the family and kept thinking my ex always said he’d be there but left so callously. I’m finding it hard to accept ppl who act that way

OP’s posts: |
sadsack78 Mon 11-May-20 21:55:18

I'm glad you are with someone who treats you better now.

I would try and not think about it too much (easier said than done!).

'Normal' life is so disrupted that I think everyone is more anxious than usual atm and it can dredge up things you wouldn't think about normally. Everyone isn't engaged in their usual buzz between work/ school/ appointments/ seeing friends and family/ going out for the fun of it. It leaves a lot of mental room for sad and anxious thoughts to creep in and get to you.

And no, you didn't do anything to make him cheat. He was abusive. He treated you badly. He hurt you, and messed with your head.

You shouldn't be the one fretting over what they did wrong.

Lots of love to you, op.

ConcentricCircles Mon 11-May-20 22:00:24

Did you make him put his hands around your throat? No. His choice.
Did you make him take drugs? No. ...His choice.
Did you make him verbally abusive? No. His choice.

So no, you did not drive him to cheat. He did it because he wanted to. His choice.

He was violent and abusive. You should be celebrating the fact that he is out of your life and that you can now enjoy yours.

PamDemic Mon 11-May-20 22:00:26

no you didn't drive him to cheat. He chose to cheat. And yes you are lucky to be free of him

have you had any counselling? I'm sure you must be traumatised by that relationship - he was violent and abusive and talking this through with a counsellor will help you make sense of these feelings, which you know are illogical.

Research has shown that a man who puts his hand around a woman's neck is on the path to killing her- so you are well free of him. I had an ex who was similar (even down to the neck thing) with amazing grand gestures. When he was fun he was amazing, and lovely and I was so in love. It's easy to look back and mourn the relationship you wanted to have and trauma and abuse has a way of making your brain block out or even justify or take the blame for the horrible stuff

crossroads1 Mon 11-May-20 22:05:45

Thank you @Idontknow23 you’re right about the small silly part. My god I could hardly feel that thing sometimes. I have these times where I really doubt myself and compare my life to others. I’m 33 and most of my friends are married/kids. My ex seems fairly settled with OW and here I am feeling sorry for myself about the past. I thought a lot more of him then everything he did. I thought he’d show abit more compassion after the cancer diagnosis but he said it was affecting him and he turned to OW to talk. I find humanity such a let down sometimes, id never do what he did which is why I wonder if it was all my fault..

Thanks @sadsack78 I hope I can forget about this one day. It was over 2 years ago but still seems to haunt me .. I really thought he was a nice guy

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crossroads1 Mon 11-May-20 22:06:25

And for me thinking he was some kind of angel makes me feel really dumb.

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Mnthrowaway20202 Mon 11-May-20 22:07:05

why am I forgetting all the horrible things he did and only remembering the good times?

It’s just human nature I suppose. It’s like hating school at the time, but missing it dearly once you leave. We tend to forget what pain feels like after time goes on.

However he physically attacked you, that’s not something you can forgive and forget imo. You did nothing wrong, you didn’t cause him to cheat. That was him being a shit person. Just because he’s still with his colleague, doesn’t mean they’re happy - he could still be carrying out this awful behaviour behind closed doors.

Grand gestures mean nothing. I’m in my early 20s so grew up with social media & couples posting their grand gestures or constantly posting how perfect their relationship is....only for them to have a messy breakup a year later, with tweets unravelling how fake their relationship was behind the posts!

Relationships where the highs are high and lows are very low(including abuse) aren’t healthy. I’d say the balanced relationship that you have now is much more healthy.

crossroads1 Mon 11-May-20 22:09:31

Thank you @PamDemic trauma def seems to be making me delusional. As more time passes I’m starting to soften to him. Whereas in the beginning I was so angry I hated him. Now those feelings are starting to change because all I can remember is how nice he used to be to be

OP’s posts: |
littlerock7 Mon 11-May-20 22:14:02

It’s a good thing that you can look at yourself honestly and see where you also went wrong in a toxic relationship BUT don’t let that self reflection make you feel like you are to blame. I’m sure you tried to change him for the better but you couldn’t? So what makes you think that any of your actions could influence his behaviour?

“My ex seems fairly settled with OW” yes whilst he has her hands round her throat behind closed doors. If he hasn’t worked on himself in anyway he will be treating her no different so count yourself very lucky.

Idontknow23 Mon 11-May-20 22:36:56 have a read of this thread posted today you will see that most people only had their first babies etc around your age so try not to compare, you could have a baby etc with the one you're with now if it goes well but you probably wouldn't have one with your ex if you were still with him and even if you did how awful for the baby and you'd be completely skint due to the drugs etc so don't let this waste of a space ex ruin what you have now else you will be left with no ex which is a good thing I know and also no current partner once again due to your ex! I'd maybe see someone to help you, your mind will think things because you have time to think during lockdown. Try not to know about what your ex is doing, if he's on social media etc then block him. Could be worse you could be dead right now so you really did have a lucky escape. Learn to build your own self confidence and worth, go for walks and try to keep busy.

category12 Mon 11-May-20 22:38:22

Idontknow23 Mon 11-May-20 22:41:18

And you say how nice he used to be, what with your dad etc yes but you need to know nice people can also do bad stuff and oh boohoo it was affecting him that your dad was ill so he had to turn to another woman!!! Fucking prick. Honestly stop these thoughts he is not a good person no matter how much you shouted at him!

Recoverandthrive Mon 11-May-20 22:58:39

I sympathise as I have been in a similar situation with similar thoughts however, I have to remind myself that whilst he appears happy and settled (causing doubts of whether it was just me) that actually for these kind of people who do the grand gestures image and portrayal is important to them. So we don't get to see behind the scenes.

Recoverandthrive Mon 11-May-20 23:00:15

Like another poster says, he has jumped from one situation to another without any self improvement in between. You are fortunate that he is your past not your present.

NoMoreDickheads Mon 11-May-20 23:43:05

Not sure what the freedom programme is. And don’t know why I’m making excuses for him but when he put his hand around my throat he stopped almost immediately after realising what he was doing

They can stop then because they've made their point to you that they could kill you if you don't behave how they want, and made the same point to themselves.

I think a lot of people are thinking all sorts of thoughts because lockdown has given us more time to brood etc.

No, it's not your fault- he did what he did because he's not a good person. It's still fairly earlier days with her- I bet eventually he'll turn nasty on her too. In fact, he probably has already- others wouldn't have known from the outside everything that was happening between the two of you, after all.

DeeCeeCherry Mon 11-May-20 23:49:29

Grand gestures from a violent druggie, or a good relationship with a decent man? I know which I'd pick. Just let it go - " being attracted to bad-boy syndrome" never does any good. & Grand gestures aren't everything.

thequeenbeyondthewall Tue 12-May-20 00:12:56

He is mean, takes steroids (known to make men violent) cheats and you are wondering if it's your fault.

No. You want to be running the opposite direction to that.

WhotheWhat Tue 12-May-20 00:53:29

Grand gestures are usually so the grand gesturer can tell everyone about how fucking great they are. They're empty, and the recipient is secondary. I'd much sooner get my own dog. Yuck.

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