After the breakup, many of us easily fall into the trap of unnecessarily blaming ourselves for the failed relationship. We constantly try to figure out what we did that made our ex fall out of love with us. We rack our brains thinking about what we could have done differently and what else we could have done to save the relationship.
But what if, after the breakup, you find out that your ex was unfaithful to you?
One of my close friends went through something like this; here’s how it happened-
She believed that the breakup happened because there was no spark in the relationship. She had no idea that he was actually cheating on her while they were together.
After the breakup, her ex wanted to come clean about things he did behind her back.
Three months after the breakup, he came back into her life and dropped the bomb.
He admitted to cheating on her when they were together. He said that he broke up with her because he was seeing someone else. She, on the other hand, was under the impression that the breakup happened because they were growing apart.
It was really shocking for her to know that he was having a whole other relationship behind her back.
Her boyfriend had actually been dating someone for at least 4 months. He thought he was doing an honorable thing by coming clean, but in reality, it was pretty sucky.
It felt even worse than the breakup
She had already moved on from her ex, but learning about his betrayal made her feel like they were still together. The whole situation made her feel that she has caught his boyfriend cheating on him now. She kept wondering – “Why he’s saying these things now? We’ve already moved on from each other.”
He told her he was feeling guilty about what he did, and to clear his conscience, he had to let her know about all this. In the back of her mind, she kept thinking that it would have been better if he had kept this secret with him.
Of course, he felt better by admitting to what he did when they were together. Yes, he wanted to clear his conscience, but he never considered for a moment how telling these things to her now was going to affect her.
It was too much information for her
When he opened up about the things he did in the past, he started giving her too much information. For the reasons best known to him, he felt compelled to give minute details about how he met this woman, where they went on the first date, etc. The more he spoke, the more hurtful it was for her.
There was no need for him to give all this information to her now. If he was to come clean about everything, the best time to do that was when they were together. At that time, maybe she could have done something about this.
It made her feel helpless
Because now she couldn’t do anything about it, this situation made her feel completely helpless. She felt that his betrayal prevented her from using other opportunities in her life. The fact that she can’t dump him now as they are already separated made her feel really angry and frustrated.
It was too convenient for her boyfriend
He did everything he was not supposed to do when they were together. Now that they had already separated, he decided to ease his guilt by confessing everything to her.
She always felt that she has moved on from her ex and the past relationship. But now that she knows about the betrayal, it feels like she has been teleported back to the past when they were together. His actions, apart from making her feel hurt, angry, frustrated, and disappointed, have also made her question their entire relationship.
She felt that his actions gave her more pain than she could handle at this point in time.
She Felt Stupid
The fact that he fooled her and she missed all the signs of cheating made her feel stupid and pathetic. She wondered that – if his boyfriend did a great job hiding, or was she being too stupid to notice the signs? All these thoughts started to make her feel miserable about herself.
How to deal with a situation when you find out that your ex was unfaithful to you?
If you are stuck in a situation like this, the first and foremost thing for you to do is to treat yourself well and don’t make this whole issue about you more than it actually is. It’s natural to blame yourself for all this mess, but it’s unhealthy and unhelpful.
Most relationship experts will tell you that a relationship doesn’t end at the breakup. After the breakup, the couple usually enters a phase where their feelings for each other enter the final stage. During this period, both individuals start transitioning their life back to where it was at the start of the relationship. It’s not an easy phase as there are many twists and turns.
Dealing with this situation
It is a terrible feeling when you are betrayed by someone you loved so much. The concept of love and relationship is based on an inherent rule that both individuals will respect and protect each other’s best interests. You don’t fall in love with someone you don’t trust. It is natural to feel angry and frustrated when your romantic partner takes advantage of that trust.
Holding on to that resentment and anger for a longer period can be detrimental to your mental health. It can also stop you from moving forward. By getting angry at his actions, you are, in a way allowing him to still have some control over your life. Below are a few helpful tips on how to get rid of this anger-
Accept and Acknowledge
You have every right to get angry when someone really close to you breaks your trust, hurts your feelings, or violates your boundaries. Your anger in situations like these indicates that you maintain a healthy level of respect. Sometimes anger also helps you identify situations that are not in your good interest while also giving you confidence and courage to distance yourself from unhealthy relationships.
Express your feelings
Many of us feel encouraged to suppress our anger and not be open about our feelings. Doing this will either push you towards depression or lead you to a point where you erupt with an explosion. And, when you erupt, you are very likely to do or say things that you’ll regret later.
You must understand the difference between expressing your anger in healthy and unhealthy ways. When you express your anger in an unhealthy manner, it damages your mental peace and affects your relationship with people close to you.
Many of us fail to understand the concept of expressing anger healthily. Healthy anger not only helps you in freeing yourself, but it also helps you in restoring your mental balance.
Your ex’s apology will not matter because your relationship with him is already over. You don’t need to express your anger to him and even don’t want him to accept or regret his mistake.
One of the healthiest ways to express your anger in a situation like this is to write a letter to him. Try to put everything down in this letter, don’t keep anything to yourself, and don’t mince your words because you will never send this letter to him.
Anger usually results from a lot of hurt, so if you get emotional while writing this letter, don’t hold your tears. Once you have written everything down, you will likely feel liberated and relieved. If you want to share this letter with a close friend or family member, go ahead. But, once you’re done, get rid of this letter.
Stop taking it personally
He betrayed you because he was unfaithful, not because you weren’t good enough. He did all this not because he wanted to hurt your feelings but because he wanted to make himself feel better. Look at things from a broader perspective and try to forgive and forget him so that you can move on with your life.
Focus on healing
When recovering from an emotional injury, you need to put all your focus on self-care. Take rest and nurture your body during this process. Surround yourself with people who genuinely love and care for you. Maybe this was one of the worst life experiences for you, but the learning from all this can help you improve your life. Always remember that it’s better to be single than to be with someone who doesn’t give you the love, respect, and acceptance you deserve.