My boyfriend of over 3 years recently confessed that he cheated on me at a party one night with some girl he barely knew. He was incredibly sorry and felt awful about it (which is why he confessed) but said something just “took over” him and he couldn’t resist the girl. We’ve been having some problems lately, but we were working through them and we’ve had such a solid relationship up until now. I just don’t get why he did it. I mean he’s been faithful all these years, why now? And why this girl? And why tell me about it? Do I forgive him? I just have so many questions and don’t really know where to go from here.
See our guy’s response after the jump!
OK, let’s look at the facts.
You’ve dated for 3 years and you felt your relationship has been solid. Maybe it has, maybe it hasn’t – I would need more information to really make a judgment.
But rather than guess, I can tell you how I would make the determination as to what happened.
Here’s the scenarios I think it possibly could have been:
Scenario #1: The relationship isn’t working for him, but he couldn’t admit it to himself and he couldn’t stomach having a long, drawn-out break-up with you.
Now, this is just a hypothetical scenario – I am not implying that this is the situation. BUT, if it were, here is how you could tell:
You mentioned that he was incredibly sorry. The question is, “If he’s sorry, how is he going to make things right? How is he going to make amends?”
Everyone makes mistakes. Things can happen and nobody is perfect… we’re all human.
If he really is completely sorry, you’ll see that he’s 100% invested in making things right.
On the other hand, if he’s been having doubts about the relationship, it will inevitably come out in conversations about it. Sooner or later, as he’s explaining himself, he’ll mention something about the relationship itself not being “right” or “the same as it used to be”. (You did mention you were having problems…)
If that happens, I would say getting out of the relationship is a good idea. My reasoning is this: If he mentions that he had a problem with the relationship prior to him cheating, then the cheating itself was his mind’s way of sabotauging the relationship.
It may have been subconscious, but it’s a hint that you’re only chipping the tip of the iceberg in terms of his issues with the relationship. This is my opinion (as is all the Ask a Guy posts), but I think bouncing in this scenario would save you a long, drawn-out break-up.
Scenario #2: The relationship is great, but the “romance” had cooled off and his innocent flirting turned into a massive accident.
OK, so in the last scenario I was painting a picture of the relationship, as a whole, being a problem for the guy.
In this scenario, I’m saying that maybe he thinks the relationship is great. Except for the sexual aspect of it.
The longer a couple stays together, the more susceptible they are to having their hot steamy love life become cold left-overs. I’m not saying it’s inevitable, but it certainly can happen.
And when it does, it’s a touchy subject. I mean, is it you or is it them? Is it the circumstances?
I’m not going into depth on the subject, but if that was the reason, I would look into ways to get things back to good in that department.
If that was the problem, that might be harder for him to bring up as a reason. Wouldn’t hurt for you to experiment and test the waters with him – might work out better in the long run regardless of whether or not it was a central problem.
Scenario #3: It was just pure bad luck.
I think that guys get a lot of flack from society, saying that we’re pigs and will drop all morals for sex.
Now I’m not saying that there haven’t been many high profile cheats historically, but to assume that all men are immoral pigs is overkill.
But we’re not perfect either. Our sexual nature is visually based (it’s how we’re built), so if you throw a sexy-looking girl into the equation you’ve already flipped a switch for a guy.
Then if she happens to be the forward-type and happens to find him particularly attractive, she’ll start flirting with him.
Now in a case like this, a dedicated boyfriend will put it out there that he has a girlfriend. But it doesn’t mean that she didn’t turn him on… he’s trying to do the right thing and be the good guy.
But if she keeps pushing the issue, that’s when things get sticky. It’s a situation where guys do their best to be good, but we don’t get to choose what turns us on.
Even though our heart and mind are dedicated to the relationship, this is a situation where our biology is strongly betraying us.
That is not to say that someone forced the alcohol down his throat (I have to assume that was part of it). And the whole idea that something just “took over” is BS as an argument for men as well as women. We all make decisions every step of the way.
All I’m saying is there is that possibility that a situation played out that he wasn’t prepared for and that was that. It wasn’t a matter of him not being satisfied with you – it was just a case of a girl who knew what she wanted and knew how to exploit male biology.
As I said, we’re all human.
Anyway, this is all food for thought. This is one of those things where you’re really going to have to list and make some tough choices.
I hope my answer helps.
– eric charles