I was in a long-term relationship and had a gut feeling that my partner was cheating.
I’m a very accomplished woman. We had three sons, and one daughter, so I stayed for them but should’ve left for me and my children.
My sons disowned my ex completely. They think he’s mentally sick. During the relationship he tried to get a girl at least half his age; and also tried to sleep with my daughter’s friends and even my daughter in-law.
I couldn’t prove it but after I left, they all started to come forward.
He’s now 60, with a 30-year-old girlfriend. I was never married to the loser. The last text I sent him was to inform him that he was pretty dumb for not marrying and divorcing me.
(I would’ve had to pay him support money and he would’ve received 1/2 my personal retirement pension.)
I’m not sure why I was even with him. He has no ambition and thinks the world owes him.
I thanked him for the greatest gift ever - my freedom - and although it was very hard at first, I had worked even harder to get where I am with no help from him.
I’m taking my time and for the first time in many, many years, I’m taking care of me. My future is very bright and I’m stronger than I ever was.
My parents taught me to be independent and I’m very thankful for having the most amazing parents and mentors in my life.
You didn’t ask a question, but you did raise a lot of relationship issues, the most common one being, should a partner who strongly suspects cheating stay “for the children?”
Your answer eventually was correct - you should’ve left for yourself and your children! They saw the ugliness going on. You could never trust a cheating pedophile! You did eventually find the strength to leave.
Given your accomplishments and supportive upbringing, you finally recognized the truth, and stayed close to your children even if you left this man... but your uncertainty dragged on too long.
I say this to alert others in similar complex situations to trust their own instincts, but also confirm them by seeking advice from someone very trusted and respected.
If you’re lucky, this may be a family member or best friend. Otherwise, a professional counsellor can guide a confused client toward recognizing what decision is right for them.
FEEDBACK Regarding the 22-year-old woman whose ex-boyfriend’s resurfaced and wants to get engaged (Oct. 8):
Reader – “Although she and her ex-boyfriend are seeing others, he’s reaching out behind his new female friend’s back – not a good sign for maintaining fidelity.
“She must be sure both are not simply feeling the rush of old feelings because someone else is in the picture!”
FEEDBACK Regarding Good Women and Bad Men (Oct. 9):
Reader – “During a motorcycle training course, my instructor repeatedly said, "What you keep fixated on you will hit."
“I didn’t realize how important that was to my life, because I drove myself into very bad relationships without realizing it.
“Recently, I’ve started to awake from my fixated gaze, to guide my life and relationships differently. I had a sordid background. But thinking I had a handle on it, life proved me otherwise.
“I read a fantastic book: What Happened to You? Conversations on Trauma, Resilience and Healing, By Bruce D. Perry, M.D. Ph.D. and Oprah Winfrey.
“It helped me understand the reasoning behind my choices.”
FEEDBACK Regarding the groom who told his bride they should immediately start a family on their honeymoon (October 15):
Reader – “Why didn’t he mention this previously?
“The wife: “We’d previously agreed that we wanted to spend our first few married years taking some courses to make us eligible for good jobs, and fitting in great travel breaks whenever possible.”
“The husband: Seems he’s always had a different agenda and is now trying to guilt-trip her because, “he promised his mother that we’d make her a grandmother very soon!”
“The bride should talk to lawyer. Her husband sounds like a manipulator. This union now seems doomed.
“I’m betting that the wife would always be “at fault” for not allowing him his promise. Very likely a major lesson learned early.
“Too bad he didn’t disclose his promise earlier, but then, he probably knew that his fiancée would call off the wedding under such pressure.”
Tip of the day:
Accepting a partner’s cheating can be as emotionally harmful to your children as to you.