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I cheated (on my fiance; we are both men)


Getting Married Cold feet to pre-marital stressors--the place to discuss all the issues that come with saying "I do."

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Old 5th January 2019, 7:17 PM   #16
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I just thought I should post a little update.

I've been journaling really really throughly over the pats few days and unfortunately my first therapy appointment had to be rearranged so it's now on Thursday.

Things I've been thinking:

1. I was very stressed about what was happening in the rest of our lives, like moving house, moving jobs, being away from family etc. It's hard moving across the country. My fiance was kept very busy with his employer and to be quite honest we lost slot of intimacy over a few months as he was working late and I was trying to find us somewhere to live etc. We had some stress related sexual difficulties and I am not proud to say I found that extremely frustrating and for a period did think he had lost interest in me (when he was actually just really stressed).

2. I never enjoyed my time with the guys I met. Not once. The sexual activity was actually not enjoyable but it was nice to be getting some attention. (This is by no means an excuse or an attempt to shift blame, this is my fault)

3. After slot of soul searching I have zero desire to meet these men again, or anyone else for that matter, for sex or romance. Hard to admit but I probably used them, there was no prospect of them developing a relationship or friendship with me, and if they were looking for that I deprived them of that opportunity.

4. I love my fiance. I began thinking about what would happen if the roles were reversed. I'd be upset, but I'd still love him. This is the man who I am so lucky to have met and I am so stupid to have jeapordised our relationship.

5. I hate myself. Or rather I don't love myself. If I felt secure enough in myself I wouldn't have thought he had lost interest during a sexual dry spell and I wouldn't have reached out.

6. Our communication recently has been terrible. Again, if I had been able to articulate how I was feeling to him this would never have happened. Again, this is my fault.

7. I'm dismayed that the general concensus on this forum is that making a bad decision somehow invalidates our relationships. Actually, I think realising that we've done something bad and trying to fix it or prevent it from ever happening again is positive, and something I'm going to give myself some credit for.

I'd appreciate any comments... And thank you for reading
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Old 6th January 2019, 11:14 AM   #17
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It could very well be that your fiance will choose to forgive your cheating. The problem is you aren't giving him that choice. You know the saying "the coverup is worse than the crime"? That applies to relationships, too; lying about anything is almost always much worse than the deed itself. It means instead of coming clean immediately and making things right, you knowingly concealed it---effectively perpetuating the crime. You are continuing that wrongdoing every day you don't come clean to your fiance about it.

We all justify decisions to ourselves. The world isn't always black and white. But when someone else's feelings are involved, especially the person you love the most, it's pretty indefensible to keep them in the dark for your own selfish ends.
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Old 6th January 2019, 11:47 AM   #18
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I think your cheating was due to your extremely poor coping skills, like how some people turned to alcohol and drug during times of intense stress.

I encourage you to talk to your fiance and work through things together. I am saying this as someone who doesn’t think one should always confesses her past infidelity.
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Old 6th January 2019, 2:53 PM   #19
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JuneL could I ask why you think I should do that in this case, if not all others?
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Old 6th January 2019, 3:45 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by lana-banana View Post
It could very well be that your fiance will choose to forgive your cheating. The problem is you aren't giving him that choice. You know the saying "the coverup is worse than the crime"? That applies to relationships, too; lying about anything is almost always much worse than the deed itself. It means instead of coming clean immediately and making things right, you knowingly concealed it---effectively perpetuating the crime. You are continuing that wrongdoing every day you don't come clean to your fiance about it.

We all justify decisions to ourselves. The world isn't always black and white. But when someone else's feelings are involved, especially the person you love the most, it's pretty indefensible to keep them in the dark for your own selfish ends.
There is a legitimate ethical argument precisely because someone else's feelings are involved that would suggest it can on occasion be the morally and ethically correct thing to do to spare your partner the heartbreak in this situation, reflecting and learning from the experience to avoid any potential further harm.

These situations are not black and white. To suggest that one causes more harm by not causing harm is an argument that i find hard to ethically justify.

To be clear, I'm not arguing at all and I thank you for your response, I'm just expressing where I am at in my pre therapy thoughts at present.
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Old 6th January 2019, 4:57 PM   #21
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What makes the argument legitimate? The fact that it exists?

Unless your fiance has said "I'd rather never know if you cheated on me", you are making enormous assumptions and denying him the fundamental agency to decide whether he wants to continue your relationship.

Frankly, the fact that you have to find independent arguments on random websites to justify your behavior (and not relying on your own moral compass) suggests you believe you're doing the wrong thing but persisting anyway.
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Old 6th January 2019, 10:04 PM   #22
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What makes the argument legitimate? The fact that it exists?

Unless your fiance has said "I'd rather never know if you cheated on me", you are making enormous assumptions and denying him the fundamental agency to decide whether he wants to continue your relationship.

Frankly, the fact that you have to find independent arguments on random websites to justify your behavior (and not relying on your own moral compass) suggests you believe you're doing the wrong thing but persisting anyway.
The system of ethics that defines this is called utilitarianism, it's an interesting philosophy. Equally several books I've read in the past few weeks written by psychologists and therapists also discuss this principal.

Secondly, seeking others views to aid our own reflection is an important part of learning. I thank you for your opinion. I'm not suggesting I've arrived at my conclusion but this is where I've gotten to on the road and I continue to learn and consider what I've done and how to move forward. I will continue to think about it, and envy you that you have such clear views. Thank you.
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Old 7th January 2019, 1:48 AM   #23
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The system of ethics that defines this is called utilitarianism, it's an interesting philosophy. Equally several books I've read in the past few weeks written by psychologists and therapists also discuss this principal.

Secondly, seeking others views to aid our own reflection is an important part of learning. I thank you for your opinion. I'm not suggesting I've arrived at my conclusion but this is where I've gotten to on the road and I continue to learn and consider what I've done and how to move forward. I will continue to think about it, and envy you that you have such clear views. Thank you.
Dude, I got my degree in Western classics and philosophy. I am very aware of and familiar with utilitarianism. Again, the existence of a thing does not make it a valid or meaningful way to live. Objectivism is also technically a "philosophy", but no serious person considers it a real basis for living because its short and long-term implications are antithetical to good governance and social harmony. Utilitariniasm has similar problems. A society where everyone believes the ends justifies the means (or a similar formulation of self-interest above all) is a community of sociopaths.

"I envy you that you have such clear views" comes off as a tad condescending, but OK. You are not asking a huge question about truth and consequences. You are suggesting it's okay to lie to your fiance about something extremely serious which could potentially end your relationship because it's not in your self-interest to do so. The immediate objection is why your self-interest comes before your fiance's, who is justifiably entitled to know the truth about the person he's marrying. I don't see how you resolve this without deciding that ultimately your feelings and your security are more important than his.

I don't mean to be hard on you, but it just comes off as seeking justification for doing something you know is wrong. If you feel fine with your conduct, and would be content being married to someone who would do the same to you, and think you can spend a lifetime carrying this secret without the guilt eating you alive (guilt being a whole other subject, morally speaking) then by all means continue. But I wouldn't expect everyone else to applaud your choices.

It's really not that complicated. If you truly believed he would understand and forgive you, you would have told him.
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Old 7th January 2019, 9:45 AM   #24
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Dude, I got my degree in Western classics and philosophy. I am very aware of and familiar with utilitarianism. Again, the existence of a thing does not make it a valid or meaningful way to live. Objectivism is also technically a "philosophy", but no serious person considers it a real basis for living because its short and long-term implications are antithetical to good governance and social harmony. Utilitariniasm has similar problems. A society where everyone believes the ends justifies the means (or a similar formulation of self-interest above all) is a community of sociopaths.

"I envy you that you have such clear views" comes off as a tad condescending, but OK. You are not asking a huge question about truth and consequences. You are suggesting it's okay to lie to your fiance about something extremely serious which could potentially end your relationship because it's not in your self-interest to do so. The immediate objection is why your self-interest comes before your fiance's, who is justifiably entitled to know the truth about the person he's marrying. I don't see how you resolve this without deciding that ultimately your feelings and your security are more important than his.

I don't mean to be hard on you, but it just comes off as seeking justification for doing something you know is wrong. If you feel fine with your conduct, and would be content being married to someone who would do the same to you, and think you can spend a lifetime carrying this secret without the guilt eating you alive (guilt being a whole other subject, morally speaking) then by all means continue. But I wouldn't expect everyone else to applaud your choices.

It's really not that complicated. If you truly believed he would understand and forgive you, you would have told him.
I'm so sorry if that read as being condescending, that wasn't what I intended! It's hard to convey emotion in writing sometimes and I apologize unreservedly if I was condescending.

You have a significant head start with your educational background, I'm trying to catch up.
I'm not trying to justify anything, I'm trying to find the best way forward and developing my thoughts as fully as I can for my appointment on Thursday.

I really mean it when I thank you for your comments

Last edited by Lowlyguy; 7th January 2019 at 9:47 AM..
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Old 7th January 2019, 10:04 AM   #25
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As much fun as it can be to read and study this stuff (or not...ask me about Hegel sometime), this is more about moral character than philosophical education. This is about who you are as a person, what choices you make, and what sacrifices or consequences you're willing to accept in the process. Hopefully you and your therapist will also explore where this behavior came from, and how to prevent it from happening again. While reading might help you understand your decisions, it won't tell you who you are inside. Only you know that.

I sincerely wish you the best and am sorry for being harsh earlier. But the core of almost all world philosophy is self-examination. There is no substitute for taking an unflinching look at yourself. It's one of the hardest things you can do, but it's a lot easier if you make choices that you're proud of. Take care, try to get some sleep, and keep us posted.
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Old 7th January 2019, 11:40 AM   #26
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Originally Posted by Lowlyguy View Post
JuneL could I ask why you think I should do that in this case, if not all others?
I think given the extent of your cheating -- no sexual intercourse, no emotional bonding, no oral sex (?)--your fiancé may forgive you, if you can show true remorse and work on your coping skills. If you do things in the right way, maybe your relationship will become stronger after working through this difficult matter. I was also putting myself in his shoes...if my fiancé was trying to keep this from me, there's a much smaller chance I may forgive him!

If your finance had done the same thing, would you want him to be honest with you?

Last edited by JuneL; 7th January 2019 at 11:43 AM..
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