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Boyfriend's lack of remorse for emotional cheating still hurts me. What do I do?


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My boyfriend (22 years old, I'm 21, and we've been going out for 3 years) admitted to having feelings for this female co-worker two weeks ago. Weeks before he admitted to it, he was taking me on an emotional roller coaster. He would pick fights with me, was very distant, exhibited bizarre behavior that was so unlike him, and he seemed attached to this girl. I knew what was going on, so it wasn't surprising when he admitted it. At first, after he confessed this, we decided to stay together, but things still seemed off. He brought up the subject of open relationships and said how he knew a couple that was in a successful open relationship for six years. He claimed he wasn't trying to convince me that we should be in an open relationship, but it sure felt like it because he was shooting down all my arguments against open relationships. This was extremely weird behavior on his part, since my boyfriend has always been a genuine, committed, monogamous guy. Truly. So we had a long talk about this and I told him that he was only bringing up open relationships to rationalize his feelings for the other girl. He seemed very confused. I kept telling him the only way to truly relinquish feelings for this girl was to avoid contact with her, but he said that was too controlling of me. He seemed like he just couldn't let go of her, which hurt me badly because if he wanted to be with me, he wouldn't care about her. (Keep in mind he's only known her since March/April of this year.) He seemed attached, yet he also said how guilty he felt and how he was contemplating suicide over this. Eventually, he told me he'd make the decision to forget about her and he apologized a lot to me. He seemed broken up about it and very remorseful, and that made me feel better. This was May 28th.


In the days after he confessed, we hung out a lot and had a great time together. I was feeling better and trying to move passed this mess. Then, on June 1st, he told me he'd texted her back and forth admitting his feelings for her (he initially told me he wasn't going to do this). He immediately offered that I could look and read the texts on his phone the next day. I didn't ask him to see them. Anyway, it's the next day and I read all the texts. I was actually pretty hurt by reading them. He texted her first because she had 'liked' some things on Facebook that made it seem like a guy was on her mind, and my boyfriend thought it was him. Here are some things he said that bothered me:


I know from personal experience that if things are hanging by a thread in a relationship, and someone amazing is met, it’s one of the most difficult situations imaginable.


[she asked him how things were doing between me and him]

Could definitely be better... Things are better with [my name] I guess. It’s weird. I feel like I have every reason to be happy with her. She’s not doing anything wrong, and is fixing all the problems that were bothering me before. She’s great. But I still feel disconnected. I actually developed feelings for someone else. And it’s tearing me apart and making me hate myself. I never in a million years thought I’d be in a situation like this. I hate being pulled in different directions. I’ve actually never been derailed in a relationship before. I’ve always been one tracked minded and completely devoted. First time in my life that I meet someone great enough to emotionally trip me up. It sucks because neither girl deserves this bull * * * * . It makes me just want to run away and disappear. I just want to do the right thing and I’d seppuku before dishonoring myself by cheating.


I tried telling her I needed a break. She just couldn’t. It would have destroyed everything. I’m just trying to suck it up and be happy. I don’t want anyone to be hurt. I tend to put my own needs last in my efforts to conserve peace. She kept asking me why I wanted a break and demanded all the details. I hate feeling like I’m hiding things and I can’t live with myself if I lie to the ones I love. So she made me tell her everything. She was surprisingly understanding, and it seems like things will be ok. She doesn’t deserve to be dumped, and I’m just trying to keep my head on my shoulders and do everything right. It really sucks though, because I’m not sure how I affected the other girl. I want her to be happy, because she doesn’t deserve anything less. But what I can say or do is limited, especially since I never told her about this whole situation directly. And also, even though I’ve been getting gut feelings and am almost sure how she’s effected, I’m still not 100% sure she’s crushing on me back. What if I’m wrong?


Then he asked if they were going to keep their "obvious crushes" anonymous still and he said to her, "As you probably guessed, it's you." As if the crush was still there, after he told me it wasn't there anymore. More:


I find it really hard to believe that there are no single guys chasing after you. He also said whatever guy gets her would be lucky.


Whatever happens, keep your chin up. And take it as a boost to your self-esteem that you’re the only one who was EVER able to derail me. Lol everyone else fails so hard against my near-impossible standards.


Does he sound remorseful or happy to be with me judging from these texts? I asked him about the whole "sucking it up and trying to be happy" thing after we'd had an extended weekend together that was amazing, and he said he's not trying to be happy anymore. He says he is happy. Yet he still told me that if he hadn't met me, then this girl would've been the one for him, or he would at least go out with her. He said, "Honestly, she's amazing, but you're more amazing." He said he didn't know how it'd turn out with the other girl and that I was more mature than her, so he decided to be with me. Though it still hurts that this even happened. Our relationship has always been awesome. He said he was unhappy the month before this happened, and it was mostly due to the effects of my birth control. I became depressed on it, but I have since switched to a different birth control. I realize that having mood swings and being depressed is not a good thing, and I am extra mindful of it now and I know how it affects him... but, I don't know if that justifies what he did. He just seems to put some blame on me and he doesn't really seem sorry anymore for what he did. I don't even want to talk to him about this because he always gets weird whenever I bring it up (which isn't often). I really want to move on, but his attitude about this whole situation bothers me. Including his continuous contact with the other girl. He even asked me if all three of us could hang out. What should I make of all this? What should I do?


Note: We used to be engaged, but we aren't at the moment. He didn't even give me a real ring, but it was just symbolic.

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i feel so sorry for u , what a horrible horrible situation my heart goes out to u did he say u could read them messges ? cos nothing is left unturned there its plain to see he is trying to manulpliate her into a relationship , sweetheart he has feelings for someone else , if he was that inlove he would not , would u look elsewhere ? i dont think so , i dont think this guy has the guts to break it off with u , so is giving u some very CLEAR hints that its not working u desrever better x

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Cut him off and go no contact.


You're better than being one of his two possible choices, he's not giving you anything close to 100% and to be honest with you if you leave him you've got a better chance of things working out then if you stay with him.


If you need further clarification on what I'm saying right there, then ask away but try to figure it out.

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I don't know. It sounds like he was putting the feelers out with this girl to see if she has feelings back. It's like he doesn't want to take the risk of leaving you if she doesn't feel the same. That's not OK. He needs to decide if he wants to be with you based on nothing but your relationship, not outside factors.


I think he's able to verbalize that he's sorry that this hurts you, but isn't acting like he gets it. He asked the three of you to hang out?? That's ridiculous!! If there are problems in a relationship it's usually two sided. It's great that you are willing to work on your end of things, but it's NOT OK that he's not willing to recognize or work on his. I think you need to set up some boundaries for yourself and decide what you will put up with or not. Not to make him do what you want, but for yourself. And if he can't agree with them, well it may be time to move on.

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He's still very much smitten with her and he's essentially telling you that you need to be okay with him having feelings for another girl. He said that she is amazing but you are more amazing, if he truly felt that way he wouldn't be in the situation he is in now.


I really think you need to let him go because I can almost guarantee you, the next step for him will be to sleep with her.

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Please leave. No offense but my ex did the same nonsense and then proceeded to leave me for her 'cept I didn't know she was in the picture since he didn't tell me. Emotional affairs tend to lead to physical affairs especially if the other woman/man tends to allow it. You'll be left if she gives him the slightest indication that she is interested in him. Also, that woman is not that good either especially if she knows he has a girlfriend and refuses to back away and not answering his texts.

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I'm just not sure what to do. I'm trying to emotionally dis-attach from him a little, but it's difficult because most of the time he's extremely sweet. He always says how cute and beautiful I am and how much he loves me. Our anniversary is coming up on Friday, and I guess I'll see how it goes. Also, a couple days after these texts he sent her a text asking her how she was doing (she had a crush on her boss, but he had a girlfriend, etc.). He said, "Things are good on my end" and everything seemed okay. However, one of his old friends dropped in on the restaurant where he works. He was just getting out, so he recommended that his friend request the girl to be his waitress. She ended up telling his friend to tell my boyfriend that she messed up his orders, as a joke. He and his friend were texting about this and my boyfriend said "She's awesome" in response. Ugh, it just bothers me. He does tend to have more female friends than male friends, but I can't tolerate this specific "friend" anymore. The situation just makes me want to throw up.


Should I still break up with him even though he's all lovey-dovey with me? I've felt that if he had broken up with me and went out with the girl, he'd probably realize his mistake much more than he does now. But I don't know if I should break up with him, because I do love him.

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I think you should break up with him. It doesn't sound like he is willing to cut off contact with her in order to work on your relationship. It's hard to detach from someone you love, but he is not committed to you at all. The longer you stay, the harder it will become to let go.


Breaking up with him is hard but it will help in the long run. It's better to hurt a little bit now, than to suffer months or years with his wishy-washy behavior. He might date this girl and realize it was nothing or you might see that he isn't hot stuff like he claims to be.

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You can always read the Un-coupling book that Lavenderdove seems to recommend to every dumpee. Did you ask him to please stop texting her? Set up some boundaries. It is fine for your boyfriend to have a lot of girls that are friends. The main issue is that he doesn't seem to be able to draw that line with this woman.


Personally, I think he is trying to keep you in the back burner being all lovey-dovey just in case this thing with her doesn't pan out. Talk to him. Tell him how this makes you feel.

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In my experience, the safest and most rewarding relationships are those in which both makes the other a priority.


In any case, it seems to me that two people need to want the same types of things out of a shared relationship ... in order for that relationship to work, especially long term. So, what do want from this relationship? Is it the same as what he wants? Do you both share similar relationship goals?

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Let us look at some facts here.


-You ask him to limit contact with her and he says no

-He puts out feelers about her relationship status and she doesn't bit

-He refers to her as his crush in the present tense

-He tells you she's a crush in the past tense

-He explores an open relationship (thought) with you

-He is no longer engaged to you

-He admits that you are "great" but he still wants her

-He is 22


If I was with a man who had the gaul to try to a) convince me to have an open relationship b) put out feelers to his crush c) get engaged and then back off, I would be GONE.


I know you are young and hope you can "fix" his feelings, but you cannot. Ironically, it is only the real prospect of losing you that would make him decide one way or another.

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You've been in the relationship for three years, as well as engaged, and he's now telling you that, "if he hadn't met you, this girl would be for him!" This guy is definitely not truly committed to you, the writing is on the wall, and you need to see this for what it is.


You deserve more than this...

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My husband had an emotional affair so I know how badly they hurt. If he's still texting like that, he's not over it.


The line stating "she doesn't deserve to be dumped" would be enough for me. He hasn't left you simply because you don't deserve it? Well, you also deserve to be with someone that loves you, and only you. You deserve to be with someone that isn't lying to you about romantic feelings he has for someone else.


I don't know why he thinks you deserve to be so disrespected but not dumped. He, on the other hand, does deserve to be dumped. You're very young and not married. I know right now it hurts like hell, but you'll find someone that does deserve you. This chump does not.

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I appreciate everyone's responses. I will take them all into account and possibly, at some point, show them to him.


New question!


Yesterday, I hung out with him and things were wonderful. We had a fun, amazing day together and there were things that he said to me that sounded like he knew he made a mistake, but didn't say it outright. He kept showering me with (genuine) compliments, saying how nobody else has ever been so patient and understanding with him and how nobody else truly loves him like I do. He said that we fit together so well personality-wise. This made me feel more secure and I actually began to heal from this whole situation.


Now, this morning: I wake up and find that, before work, he commented on her status on Facebook. At first, I was like "What the hell?" but I realized it was innocent. Then, I noticed he 'liked' her new profile picture. It's just a picture of her, no one else, standing in her mirror, posing. She's not wearing anything too skimpy, but she does look pretty in it. This upset me, because why would he 'like' this? Especially a picture of a girl who he had a significant crush on? It's now reopened the wound that was starting to heal. But should I be worried over this, or am I being silly?

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Why are you tolerating this? You are being a major doormat, IMO. Your "bf" tells you he is crazy about someone else, wants her, refuses to cut contact with her, and you sit by calling it a mere "crush", while as soon as she gives him the green light, he's going to dump you and be with her. Isn't that obvious?


Dump this clown. He's playing you for a fool. Unless, the idea of an open relationship works for you, because if you continue to enable his affair, that's where you'll end up.

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You can always do this: Break up with him and let him openly court/woo that woman. Problem with long term relationships is that things become stale and the other party might start getting bored and might become infatuated with another person. Either your significant other respects and loves you enough to distance themselves from the OM/OW or they end it so they can openly pursue the other. Let him make the mistake because by default you are slowly becoming the dumpee, not the dumper because your hand is forced to do so. Some people are forced to dump the other person because of these issues. He is already becoming emotionally detached from you. I'm really sorry for sounding blunt though.

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I agree with everyone else. Leave him. He's saying the right things to you but his actions don't match his words. He says he'll forget about her and then goes and declares his feelings for her hoping they would be reciprocated. He wants to stay with you but keeps in contact with her. Someone who wants to detach emotionally from another person and work on his current relationship doesn't go on Facebook to keep feeding his crush. Not to mention that he doesn't seem concerned about how this hurts you. I'm sorry to say but he doesn't seem dedicated to making things better with you. Dump him and save yourself the heartache.

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You guys are too young to be so serious. If you get engaged and married now, he will feel stifled and you will wake up one day and realize you never really experienced life as a single woman, and will want to, after the 'glow' of your relationship has faded.


Date, but do not be exclusive. Both of you step back and experience life a little. If you are meant to be together, it will happen. Better to find that out now than to marry, have kids, and then have to split up later.


You have PLENTY of time.

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To me it sounds like he stays with you to be safe but is more wowed/physically attracted to her. You don't deserve this and definitely not from somebody who claims to love you. I would break up with him. If he is pursuing another woman and telling her his feelings towards her, he is already cheating.

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This entire story makes me sick to my stomach.


Let him go... for your sanity PLEASE. This situation is toxic and will severely mess with your head I promise you that.


Let go and focus on yourself. It may be difficult at first but you will feel better in the end.. don't you feel like your swimming against the tide? Why force things? Let him be.. clearly he needs to sort his feelings out and you deserve much better than this.

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