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Boyfriend of 8 years releases his guilt


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Recently I've just moved into a flat with my boyfriend. We started dating while I was 16 and he was 17, it was a long distance relationship at first then he ended up moving into my parents house to live with me, we went off to uni, then came back to live with my parents for a bit and now have our own place. Some background information is needed here

  • We met on the internet - unintentionally, he liked my picture on myspace we started talking and it all went from there
  • While he was sweet with me online he was also talking to another girl and ended up blocking me out to talk to her but then decided that I was the one he wanted - he also claims its because our mutual friend was getting annoyed that we were flirtatious, we got back together but he still spoke to her and met up with her without telling me anything about it, I'm only annoyed about him meeting up and feeling the need to hide that from me, this is so far in the past I dont care about it anymore
  • 5 years later while we were engaged and living together at uni he broke up with me saying he doesn't love me but he was actually pursuing another girl in his class (I done psych, he done bioscience), to be fair I was pushing him away at the time and this girl was giving him attention - 3 months later he wanted to get back together and I wouldnt give in for about 5 months - but anyway I can reason round this
  • Other things have happened in our relationship, he seemed like the 'perfect boyfriend' i.e. had no desire to check other girls out, like needed me and wanted me round all the time - but I wanted my freedom to go out with my friends, I was young I wanted to go clubbing etc. and I am a pretty big perv, I love checking out people because well if someone has like an amazing body or has a really attractive face give credit where it's due! The way that I am in a relationship, and tbh everything he has dragged me through, I am incredibly loyal and I make people feel safe, especially him, I do not ever want to make him feel like he cannot trust me


BUT recently he has really opened up, things he's kept secret like before we got together he went to a strip club 3 times (yes he was underage at the time), 8 years into our relationship and I'm only hearing this now? I would have been completely fine with it, if he told me that at the beginning he'd be in for a treat because I would want to put on a show, I'm competitive lol - still i looked past this

He's told me more things about himself that he hasnt told other people and I love knowing that much about him, I feel more bonded

He's told me he does check out other girls or sometimes goes to porn in his head when we have sex - I do the same thing! I really don't care, I've been trying to get that out of him for years because well ofc he does! He's a boy, it's kind of expected isn't it? So I really didn't care

He also told me he's thought about my friends having sex, not that he's desired them but like when we talk about sex stories as a group he gets ideas, which is fine but he's thought of these while he's aroused or uses them to get aroused, and whie I'm fine with porn I'm a bit more uncomfortable with this one but tbh I've thought the same thing too but never felt the need to tell him because I know it's nothing to worry about especially if we've shared sex stories recently but I dont know, it's kind of weird that he felt so guilty about it that he had to tell me and make a big thing about it

He said he finds my mum attractive and my sister - absolutely fine with, my mum looks really good for her age and my sister is attractive, we get our looks from our mum - I'm so fine with this

BUT he told me that while we were doing some DIY in my sisters room back when we lived at my parents he told me that she left her phone out, no password, and he went snooping through her pictures, he came across a very explicit picture that she had sent to someone else, he then went to the bathroom to well relieve himself, she is 5 years younger than me and underage - tbh if I had a camera phone I'd probably do the same thing when I was her age, I am a very frisky one but he went through her phone trying to find something like that...


I have seriously been dragged through dirt in this relationship, I unfortunately love him? I'm not sure if I do now, I haven't listed everything


So during these last few weeks of him feeling like he needs to get everything off his chest, it's hard for him to get up and keep an erection. The sister thing he only told me yesterday, so we were having sex before this. I was upset at first but read up on it and tried my best to make him feel like it's ok, I was pleasuring him and told him he didn't need to work on me, that I was just enjoying myself as is, and I was anyway but like I am trying


I have always tried to understand why he would do those things and I have always come up with a good reason and though it is hard sometimes I love him enough to keep level headed about it all


And it's not like if we break up I'd be worried about being at all because while we were broken up and I actually had a chance to go out I literally for a whole week had at least one person like seriously interested in me every day, one of my friends was also really interested in me so personality wise I knew I must be pretty decent and looks wise I had never felt better, I was seriously desired, it was the best week of my uni life!! But yeah I cannot reiterate enough, I know I am extremely desirable, and he even admitted that it's only recently that he's kind of seen how desirable to other people I am


I have tried and tried, I am such a cool girlfriend, so understanding and forgiving but I do not know how to get past invading my sister's privacy and trying to find pictures of her, if he had like a passing thought about her naked because she was wearing revealing clothing or whatever I can kinda get that but he went through her phone to find them...


I feel like he is changed now and yeah that happened in the past but this isn't just something against me, it's also against my sister - I really don't know what to feel or how to cope or what to do, do I tell her? do I throw a massive hissy fit? I feel like after these last few weeks of him coming clean about stuff and statements like "I really need to tell you something, but face to face" while he's crying on the phone at work, and then he comes home only after an hour at work to tell me something that isn't a big deal to me - my energy is spent. I know he feels bad, I know he's finally opening up to someone (he doesn't socialise outside of work even though I try and get him to, so he's only told me things), I know he feels guilty and is having a hard time right now but he is hurting me too even though I'm trying to stay strong for him, I have told him this the last 3 days but yeah now the sister thing

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I don't see why he'd lie to me about all of this and if he has he's a great actor - he would be sabotaging the relationship but he really fights to keep me. And I think actively stealing my younger sisters phone to find nude pics of her, is quite bothersome.

I think it was a chain of events why he's doing all this confessing now, he told me about something in his past and I was shocked, confused, angry but that was all because we've been talking for 9 years and I had no idea, could have told me countless times, even asked him if he's done it or would do it and he said no. He then told me other stuff and I was fine with it, I dont know if he was expecting a bigger reaction. And now with my sisters pic thing, I got into a squatting position on top of him recently and apparently she was in a squatting position in the picture too, so the picture was quite explicit.

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