Well, I've been cheated on. How about you?

First off, I apologize for my lack of posts recently. Life sort of got in the way, but I don’t imagine I was missed too much anyway.

A few Dopers may remember me from the time I was debating on whether to hook up with one of my best friends in the whole world. There was some tension and worry because she played “the other woman” to my buddy years ago. My buddy got married but remained friends with everyone and that cheating relationship was scooted under the carpet and quickly forgotten about (for the most part).

Anyway, so me and this girl hook up and things are brilliant and wonderful for a few months, until I start feeling her drift away. I question her about it, try to open up communication, but things are weird. Same thing between me and my buddy. I got the feeling something was going on, but since I trust them both completely I try to ignore it and chalk it up to… whatever. Something else.

Jealousy/insecurity got the best of me, and when she checked her email at my house I took the opportunity to do some snooping around in her inbox only to find love notes from my (now ex-)buddy to her. I confronted both of them about it separately. Buddy lied and said nothing happened. Girlfriend told the truth that one night after a fight between me and her, she got insecure and mad and drunk. Buddy said the right words and they slept together.

I made one last angry call to Buddy, telling him I never wanted to speak to him again and he had a week to tell his (now pregnant) wife before I considered that my duty. He waited until the morning I made my call to tell her, but he did end up confessing. She and I have talked a handful of times since everything came to light, mostly me consoling her and talking through this fun recovery process. I feel awful for her.

Anyway, so all this happened about 4 months ago. Against my better judgement, I’m sticking with her. The reasons for this:

  1. Buddy is a manipulative, jealous asshole. I’ve always kind of known this about him. He’s always competed with me, and I’m sure it drove him nuts to see me with one of his (secret) exes.

  2. It was a boy from her past, not a new guy she picked up along the way.

  3. She spent the 4 months between the cheating and me finding out about it trying her best to make things right between she and I. I truly believe this, based on what I noticed from her and what she’s told me about the months I was in the dark.

  4. I’ve installed some logging software on her computer to track what she’s up to, and she’s been nothing but loyal and great since everything happened. I’ve checked her phone records and text messages too. I guess I’m being a little too thorough with my checking up, but I don’t plan to do it forever… just to put my mind at ease.

  5. If I lose her as a girlfriend, I lose her completely. No way could we remain friends, and I’m short on friends now all of the sudden.

Please, don’t try to encourage me to leave. My mind is set. But I do want to hear stories about how things did or didn’t work for cheated on people in this here forum. Since everything got revealed out in the open, our relationship has never been better. I guess that’s a silver lining for me, but I know this is rare.

Cheaters and cheatees… chime in with your stories. Help me feel better or worse about this.

Why in the world would you do this?

Yep… been on the receiving end of that and it ended in divorce.

It’s well behind me now (3+ years) that I can distance myself from it and sometimes even joke about it with a close friend. It’s a derisive and sarcastic kind of humour but better than still agonizing over the details of the how and why and all the rest of the shit that came along with it. Good riddance to her. She did me a favour in the long run. Truly.

I do have the yipes about #4. Not the road I’d go. But I’m not you. Good luck with that.

Hmm…I do recall your story from before when you first hooked up with this girl. Glad it at least “worked out.”

My cheated-on story (in brief) and others’ can be found here…if you’re interested.

The guy I was with who cheated on me…well he cheated on me once when we first were together, then we “got over it” and moved and he cheated on me again with someone else, and we “got over it” and we did that dance a few more times with this same woman and eventually I exploded in full force (screaming in the middle of the apartment complex, wanting to take a swing at him, crying, forcibly removing my shit from his place, etc) and went down about 10 notches on the mental stability scale, which took a long time to recover from.

I was where you were, the first time it happened. And the second and third times. I needed to keep it going because I had nothing else going for me. And I also attributed the cheating not to my partner but to the manipulative other parties. Looking back…eeeeh, not such a good idea. For me.

Obvioiusly it’s not the same for everyone. Lots of people stay with the folks who’ve cheated on them and I would imagine it works out ok for them.

But just remember…fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice - shame on me.

You know what? I was all set to be supportive and say, hey, these things happen, and only you and she can know if it’s right to stay together, so good luck…until I read the bit about the logging software. You, sir, no matter how you justify it, are an asshole of the lowest caliber, and you should repent immediately.
Remove that software, and then you’ll have a little more credibility as a nice guy.

In my opinion you were out of line to threaten to narc your friend out to his wife, and you’re TOTALLY out of line playing CIA to the girlfriend. If you trust her, trust her. If you don’t, dump her. But don’t think for a minute that all that checking up is going to ensure she’ll never do it again.

Because his wife is also my friend. I’ve known her almost as long as I’ve known Buddy… about 10 years now. We’re on excellent terms and have hung out regularly for years and years, both with Buddy and by ourselves. We’ve taken vacations together. She’d definitely be suspicious if I stopped contact with both of them, and only a matter of time before she put it together like I did.

Long story short, she needed to know what kind of man she married and needed to know exactly how much to trust him in the future. I couldn’t feel okay about letting a friend live in ignorance about her own life like that.

This is (obviously) just my opinion but dude, that is so not okay to have done. Does she know about what you installed on her computer? Christ…

I don’t mean to sound snarky. Honestly. It’s just that the thought of my SO invading my privacy like that makes me nauseated. How is that okay in your mind?

If this is what needs to be done to make you feel at ease, it is time for both of you to walk away - far away. Does she know you spy on her like that? How about we (the SDMB) give you a week to come clean?

Yeah, I know… I installed it like 2 days after it happened, kept tabs on it for a month or so before becoming so overwhelmed with guilt about it that I ended up telling her what I did. So she knows its on there… no secret there. She’s openly given me the password to her email address and she understands why I did what I did.

For the record, I didn’t do anything to keep her faithful. What I did was assurance that she was telling me the truth, since I could no longer just “trust” what she was saying. Seeing it with my own eyes made all the difference in the world for me and helped me over my most insecure moments.

So, even if you don’t agree with what I did, she does know I did it. She’s okay with it.

Oh, and yes, I told her the night all this came to light that I figured it out by snooping in her email after the talking it out didn’t work out for me. I even apologized for the snooping. Her response was a twisted, weird looking face followed by “Wait… now you’re apologizing to ME? Are you kidding?”

If she hasn’t already, she will shortly have a new email account that she’ll use on another machine.

All you’ve accomplished to make her a better/smarter cheat.

And all this control you’re exhibiting over her. It’ll backfire.
I take no joy in telling you this. None.

#4 freaks me the hell out, son. Tracking her? WTF? How about communicating openly and honestly with her and creating a relationship of love and trust?

Then again, this is a woman who was in a cheating relationship with your friend, and somehow you thought her reformed with you? I’m not sure why your ex-Best friend is taking all the heat here. She’s a cheater, plain and simple.

But whatever, you’re not looking for advice, and you won’t take it, so let’s move on to what you did ask. Have I cheated/been cheated on?

Yep, plenty. I twice cheated and was about half a dozen times cheated on. None of those relationships lasted, although only some of them ended because of the cheating itself.

My husband and I talked about our past relationships a whole lot when we were dating, and we decided that, for us, an open relationship is the way to go. A large piece of this was that in all the times we had cheated or been cheated on, the infidelitous (is that a word?) relationships were always temporary, and never really presented a threat to the primary relationship (although the jealousy and lack of honest communication did). They were of the “wow, was I drunk” or “this person seemed so alluring at the time, but in the long run, I was happier with my boyfried” or some other temporary reason. We saw (and see) no reason to tear apart our marriage because of a temporary infatuation or connection to someone else.

If a more permanent connection ever happens, we’ll have to talk about it and see what works out, of course. But it hasn’t happened yet.

I could draw all sorts of analogies about how doing something to someone that they say they’re ok with is still wrong, but I’m sure that wouldn’t make a dent in your Great Wall of JustificationTM You’ve built, now would it?

So rather than hijack your glorious opus to woe, I’ll let it be. Maybe someone else will have the burning urge to talk some sense into you.

Yikes, okay… I think everyone is putting too much thought into this logging software thing.

  1. I never did it to stop her from cheating or to keep her faithful. I did it to make sure that she was telling me the honest truth about never contacting Buddy again. I could no longer just take her word for it (for obvious reasons), so I did what it took to ease my mind.

  2. After monitoring this for a month or so, I felt so guilty I confessed, apologized, and my mind was at ease that I could trust her again. During this conversation, she volunteered her password to ease it further. This was maybe 2-3 months ago if memory serves.

  3. I installed it at my most insecure and ridiculous, a few days after finding this all out.

  4. I volunteered to uninstall it, but she told me she was okay with what I had done and my motivation behind it, and was eager to prove how she wants this to change.

Anyway, it’s true I never should have done it, but now that it’s all out in the open and trust has started to be returned, it’s sort of a non-issue. I bet I haven’t even checked the logs twice since our big talk about it. It’s not even on my mind enough to worry about it anymore. I’ll uninstall it tonight if it’ll make ya’ll feel better about it. Yikes.

Ignorance is bliss, they say. I know you’re hurting, but I just don’t think spreading the pain was the right thing to do.

To answer your question, yes, I have been cheated on. When my boyfriend and I were both about twenty years old and living together, he decided to screw the fourteen year old neighbor. She felt so guilty about it that she told me the very next day in agonizing detail. I was so dumb, I threw a big fit, then decided to let it slide. He screwed the kid some more, plus some other girls…I kept catching him and letting it slide, until I got pregnant. When I realized I was pregnant, I realized that the guy might be a good enough boyfriend for a stupid shit like me, but he’d be a piss-poor father. Then I left.

He came whimpering around for a while, but I would have nothing more to do with him, and in fact, seriously considered never telling him about the bun in the oven. My mom convinced me it was the right thing to do. :rolleyes: He visited a few times after my daughter was born, but eventually flaked off for good. His total contributions to her welfare: A baby ring, twenty dollars, and an extremely large flea-market quality stuffed tiger.

yeah, and while you’re at it, make the corrections on your tax return where you under reported your income. Don’t make us put the IRS on your ass. :smiley:

Dung Beetle’s story is why the pregnant wife needs to know. She needs to be prepared for the fact that he is a philanderer and she might be on her own sooner or later. Certainly wouldn’t hurt for her to get finances in order, copies of all important papers, and an account in her own name if she doesn’t have it. It would help to do this while also sorting out the trust issues.

I’m the one who’s not sure he should have told her! She’s married and pregnant, chances are she’s not going anywhere. She may already know what kind of person she’s married to. wasson said it was only a matter of time until she put it together on her own; I might have let her. Furthermore, what if her husband was scared back onto the straight and narrow? She could have been spared a lot of pain.

I’m not expressing myself very well here, and it’s possible that I’m wrong as wrong can be. It’s just that “you do it or I’m going to” thing is so arrogant. It really rubs me the wrong way, and I feel the real reason it’s done is to punish the buddy, not because it’s really the best thing for his wife.