Home Lifestyle We got together when our exes cheated, but I’m worried I settled

We got together when our exes cheated, but I’m worried I settled


The pair sought comfort in each other after their betrayal (Picture: Getty Images)

Rebounding after a split can be complicated, as your judgement can be clouded by a desire for revenge, companionship or comfort.

This week, we hear from a reader who began a new relationship after being cheated on.

She sought solace in the man whose fiancée her ex ran off with, but has begun to wonder if they only got together because they’d both been betrayed.

Read the advice below, but before you go, don’t forget to check out last week’s dilemma, from a man whose wife retaliated to his lads holiday by sleeping with someone else.

The problem…

I’ve ended up with a guy I barely care about, all because my ex (his supposed friend) went off with his fiancée, and the pair of us got together because we both felt abandoned and lonely.

We used to go out as a four, but for months my boyfriend was having a thing with his friend’s partner, and of course the two of us were the last to know. I feel such a fool, as with hindsight the clues were all there. My ex and this girl were always very touchy-feely with each other, but he said she was just a tactile person so he went along with it.

He also started being secretive about his phone, working late more than usual, and even went away with his friends a few times – when, funnily enough, this girl was off ‘visiting family’.

He eventually dumped me without saying the reason why, except that he needed space. I subsequently got a call from this other guy saying his fiancée had left him, admitting she was in love with my ex.

What started off as a few drinks to cry on one another’s shoulder, has turned into something more complicated. We’ve slept together numerous times and he keeps on saying how lucky we are to have each other after all we’ve been through.

I don’t think he’s the guy for me and worry we’ve ended up together on the rebound. I just don’t know how to tell him as he’s been so hurt already.

The advice…

What’s happened between you is completely understandable. You have both suffered a pretty rotten betrayal, and it’s natural that you’ve found comfort in one another’s arms. After all, who better to understand how each of you feels?

But you’re right to stop and check yourself; it’s almost certainly too soon to move on with anyone else when your heart has so recently been broken. You’re both in a vulnerable position, and maybe share a need for reassurance that you’re still sexy and desirable; but unfortunately, mixed emotions of misery, anger and insecurity don’t tend to lead to good decision making. It’s highly unlikely that either of you is ready to move on or make sensible relationship choices.

Tell this guy that while you really appreciate him caring so much for you, you need more time to get over your ex and the way he has hurt you.

You’d probably benefit from seeing a counsellor to give you a setting where you can vent all your anger and unhappiness; your local branch of Relate will be able to help you.

Tell this guy that you want to stay in touch, but only as friends. Point out that although he may not realise it, he too needs time to get over the hurt and betrayal – and maybe counselling would work for him too.

Who knows, perhaps the pair of you will resume a closer relationship when there’s been time for the emotional dust to settle – for both of you.

Laura is a counsellor and columnist.

Got a sex and dating dilemma? To get expert advice, send your problem to [email protected].

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