When I was 22, I was in a relationship that I had been in for around 6 years. We had been on holiday to South Africa where we DJ’ed over the New Year and spent 3 weeks of having such an amazing time. When we returned, he was different with me. I can’t explain why, he just was.
In the November before we went to South Africa, I flew to Germany with family to say goodbye to my aunty who was dying of cancer. It was one of the hardest things I had to do. She sadly passed away in the February and I took it bad. Following on from her death, our family dog died – our loving, kind and beautiful border collie. So to say I wasn’t in a very good place was an understatement but I was dealing with life as best as I possibly could under the circumstances.
The reason I am telling you this will make sense with all that follows.
He was acting weird, his life had changed, he was doing things he wasn’t usually doing and behaving in a strange way. I had my suspicions almost immediately. But I couldn’t cope with facing him and his lies.
I can pinpoint to the day when I began drinking. I only ever used to drink when we went out clubbing and after a DJ set. I would never get “smashed” just tipsy. But my drinking became a daily habit. I wanted to block out what was going on and the disastrous relationship I was in.
It took me 6 months before I finally had the guts to confront him and rat him out. You see, I obtained her personal details and gathered evidence on him. So much so he couldn’t possibly deny it right? Wrong, he still denied it and kept lying to me. Eventually he came clean after a huge row one night and after I spoke to her.
My suspicions of him sleeping with her in my bed were also confirmed by her.
To cut a very long story, I moved out and in with one of my best friends in her bar/pub. We simply had the most amazing time, but sadly, she had to relocate and moved on. Which left me in a predicament. I ended up moving back with my boyfriend to the place her was having an affair. It was a really tough time but we seemed to be “fixing” the issue.
I stayed with him for a further 5 years until I couldn’t take anymore. I tried to see past his behaviour, I tried to forgive but I could not forget.
Some people can come back from this kind of behaviour and some people can trust again. For me, once that trust has been abused to that extent, it’s impossible for me to come back from it – simple!
I have never cheated on anyone, so I don’t expect the same back.
Moving on from a cheating partner can be one of the most hardest things to do relationship wise because everything changes. I left my work, friends, home and everything I had ever know for 11 years. I moved away and started all over again. Of course, you don’t need to be as drastic as me, but I wanted to move back home which I did and I have been back for nearly 8 years.
You can rebuild your life, you can start again and you can also love again.
The time between leaving my ex and starting a new relationship was amazing, I had fun. I wasn’t in the best place to start with but it was my way of dealing with things. I got my life back on track and turned it all around again. But in true Kat style, ended up falling for the wrong person again but we have two beautiful children from that relationship and I wouldn’t change it for the world. I have had to grow and learn from that relationship which I have done and yet again, got my life back on track.
Life is full of lessons and we need to listen and learn from those lessons. I have been single for nearly 3 years and I know I am getting closer to loving myself fully again. I know what I want and I won’t compromise.
I love my life as it is just having someone to share it with would be super lovely of course. But it doesn’t define me.
So, coming from a place of pain and experience my best advice for moving on from a broken down relationship such a cheating or mental abuse are:
- Heal at your own pace – this takes as long as it has to, there is no time limit to your healing
- Learn to enjoy your own company (I often take myself off to the cinema alone which I love doing)
- Make time for family and friends
- Say yes to more events/celebrations to get you out again
- Focus on work or a new hobby – keeping your mind distracted
- Cry – seriously, allow yourself to get upset. I have to force myself to cry and I watch really sad or life affirming films to help me. It’s an amazing release and you feel incredible by allowing yourself to acknowledge your emotions
- Create new happy places for yourself
- Create new traditions around seasonal celebrations
- Avoid going to places you used to go with your ex until you know you can visit without getting upset
- Discover the real you and love who you have become
Remember, not everyone is a cheater and there will be someone out there that wont do that to you. I am just really unlucky in that department but, I am still hopeful that I can have a loyal and loving relationship with someone I completely trust.
My downfall has probably been that I always give complete trust and maybe I need to be more cautious. But I would never go into a new relationship that I knew I wanted to work with the mindset that they will cheat which leads me on to my final piece of wisdom.
Treat each new relationship with a fresh pair of eyes and a heart like it’s never been broken.