*** Sex addiction is very real. I finally saw it first hand***
You said it! Why did it take so long for him to realize what he had? There are so many underlying reasons. I couldn't get a complete sense from your post of how he has been in your relationship, but it sounds like if he thought you were "perfect and amazing" then he would be happy...right? And now, it all feels wrong. I'm so sorry that you've betrayed before and continue to go through this. Aside from the Healing Library here, just talking in these forums can be an outlet for you I hope. You can say anything you need to just to relieve some of the emotions and we will be right here for you listening with open arms.
It sounds like he is remorseful now, though it doesn't take away the pain. He will need to be completely transparent and attentive to you to try to help you through this. Others here will probably suggest counseling, which isn't a bad idea. My guess is that when you let someone into your soul and give your heart to them, it can be 20 relationships and 20 times over, and it will still hurt just as much as it did the first time you endured it because you were vulnerable to him. Please do not give up and become cynical and jaded. It sounds like you want hope, but lost it. That is understandable. You are a good person with values and no one can take that from you.
You deserve better. You deserve truth, honesty and love.
If he is/was incapable of giving that to you then you know your answer - he's not worth it and move on.
There are guys out there that are honest and do not cheat. There are.
I suggest IC to help you figure out what it is you need to get healthy.
You have been through this too many times (once is too many). You need to love yourself more than staying for another trip on this betrayal road.
So sorry this has happened. Keep moving. You are better than being treated like an option.
[This message edited by 1Faith at 11:28 AM, June 25th (Tuesday)]
I had no idea he had cheated early in our relationship. I wasn't going to be cynical and make another man pay for the wrongs my exes did. So I trusted him. I believed him when he told me where he was, and what he was doing. He lied to me about a woman he claimed was only ever a friend (she was actually a distant ex, and didn't want to lose that "friendship"). I discovered he had started up a relationship with me... at the same time, he was leading his ex (prior to me) to believing they were on a break, to get their lives straight. He tells me now that he was over the ex, but wanted to lessen the blow, so he agreed to a "break", but never planned on going back. And then there is the ONS. He was celebrating a friend's birthday. A weekend at the beach. She was in the group, they were all drinking, and the two of them decided the GF (me) didn't matter. When he got back home, they friended each other on FB, and from there, I think it lost it's luster. But he did try and keep in contact. Eventually, unfriending her, when he and I decided to be on each other's FB. I never thought FB was a place for relationship stuff, so I had originally decided to keep us off it. So skip ahead to today... we've been living together since September (all along, me never knowing these things), but my radar was going off. In February, after I kept questioning him as to why he was so willing to be an open book, he starts telling me things. Not all though...I had to push and push and push. I'd been down this path before, so I saw the signs of someone who's messed up. He had felt guilty, and rather than admit things, he decided he was going to do everything in his power to make me know I was who he wanted to be with, and was loyal to. All while I'm still thinking he's never cheated or lied to me. He gave up porn, and wanted me to know his phone was open to me at any time. Since finding out about his actions, he's also gone as far as to closing any old accounts from his past, clearing all females from his FB, giving me access to his phone acct to see his texts and calls, he contacted people from that weekend and told them he was no longer going to be "hanging" out with them, that his first and only concern was to do the right thing by me, he contacted the distant ex and told her to never contact him again, and when the ex before me reached out to him, he told her to get on with her life, he's blocked them, he's asked for help on this site, he purchased "Not Just Friends" (still needs to read it), and I know I've seen true remorse. BUT I can't seem to move forward!!! I know it's been such a short amount of time, but so many issues compound moving past this. I'm torn. We aren't married. So why fight for this? Why fix it? I love him. I know that. And he's doing everything that I know of, to make things right. I just don't know if I can move past it. I should add that I have children from my marriage. They love him, and he's wonderful with them. Their real father lives so far away, and I feel now like I messed up in letting someone into their life. I'm sorry for rambling... I know there are far worse stories out there...I've had worse. I just wish I knew why I don't have the answers this time
I think that the fact that you wouldn't let your future relationships be dictated by your past is a sign of your good character. And no, you certainly aren't an option. Perhaps you should give yourself a bit more time. He shouldn't have done what he did. Period. However, it seems that his actions are matching his promise to you. That is a good sign. It could be worse. My WS has been truly remorseful and his actions have matched his words so I have stayed. That doesn't mean his is forgiven and we are going to play house again. Just means that I am staying. Means that I love him. Means that I am demonstrating to him what unconditional love looks like. He's been knocked off his feet by me realizing what an amazing woman he has had all along. He demonstrates his remorse and pledge to never hurt me again through actions and real words e-v-e-r-y day to me. He placed his promise ring back on my finger with a new promise. If you can see your relationship alive still, and it's what you want, fight for what you want. If he fights for it too, then there's hope. Regardless if you're married, you'll need your relationship to have a strong foundation with real communication.
I have found this site a valuable resource to gain insight to varying perspectives from people who have been there, done that and bought the t-shirt.
Sometimes the insight came from a situation very similar to mine, other times not.
The decisions made during and after the discovery of infidelity are not based on any one thing.
So many factors come into play. Many of those factors are out of our control. As our circumstances change our decisions change.
We wind our way through a very complex maze often changing paths many times along the way before emerging out the other side. Sometimes we are guided through the maze by our family and friends. Other times a fabulous IC, and for the fortunate, our WSO.
Almost all times it is a combination of all of the above, but some navigate the maze alone. The dead ends we encounter along the way cause us to back up and change direction time and time again. Ultimately there are two exits out of the maze, to stay or to go.
To devote ourselves to putting in the hard work to salvage our relationship or to begin a life alone.
In the end we put all of these factors into our decision making process. We evaluate the positives and the negatives and we come to a final decision.
Hopefully the decision that is arrived at is the one that will result in a happier and emotionally safer and emotionally healthier life for us.
Regardless of where we exit the maze, it is an arduous journey wrought with unimaginable pain that will scar us for life. But eventually those scars will fade leaving us with just the memory of the pain we endured.
My will shall shape the future. Whether I fail or succeed shall be no man's doing but my own. I am the force; I can clear any obstacle before me or I can be lost in the maze. My choice; my responsibility; win or lose, only I hold the key to my destiny. ~Elaine Maxwell~
[This message edited by 1Faith at 3:42 PM, June 26th (Wednesday)]