he cheated- what should i do?

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-16-2007
he cheated- what should i do?
Wed, 01-28-2009 - 12:26am
Just found out today that my boyfriend of 10 years (dating since high school, living together for 4 years) cheated on me. He says he was at a bar and was quite drunk, was propositioned by a woman, went to her house, and began receiving oral sex before supposedly realizing he made a mistake and leaving. Not sure if this is the true story, obviously, but that's his word. I am in a state of shock and not sure what to do. He is extremely upset and sorry, and says it was the alcohol, he has never done it before and will never do it again. However, he did not tell me about the incident until he mentioned that he went to the doctor and got an STD test, when I pressed him about why, he finally admitted the incident and that it was unprotected, and that I should be tested too. This is so insulting and so stupid of him on top of the emotional pain that I am infuriated. I can't see how i can ever trust him, and since we are not actually married (although we had been talking about it, and have been together through a lot longer than a lot of married couples!) I am thinking I should just end this relationship. He says that it is related to a drinking problem (he does drink way to much frequently) and wants to get counseling.
We live together, were best friends and deeply in love, and have nearly all friends in common (and were considered the perfect couple by many of them!) so breaking up will change my whole life.
Any advice on dealing with issues like this would be greatly appreciated. I just wish this never happened, but I feel like allowing him a chance to try to work things out will make me an enabler and a doormat.
Thanks for your advice.
iVillage Member
Registered: 01-13-2009
Wed, 01-28-2009 - 8:45am

Monsoon..I have almost 20 years into my marriage and 4 daughters. I think the answer to your questions lies within your heart. My W is ina

iVillage Member
Registered: 01-28-2009
Wed, 01-28-2009 - 1:57pm

I am so sorry that happened to you.

I would be very wary of marrying someone with a drinking problem, they tend not to go away.

As far as his cheating goes, it seems related to the alcohol and his choosing to be in a bar without you.

iVillage Member
Registered: 04-05-2008
Wed, 01-28-2009 - 3:12pm

In a few words...leave him.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-22-2007
Wed, 01-28-2009 - 3:21pm


No one does something drunk that they didn't really want to do sober. Alcohol doesn't provide the ideas, just enables the ones that were there.

You're young, you haven't really had many relationships (none, except for this guy!).

iVillage Member
Registered: 12-24-2006
Thu, 01-29-2009 - 5:08am

I'm sorry this has happened to you.

Do you know he's posting about this on another board?


iVillage Member
Registered: 12-10-2008
Thu, 01-29-2009 - 11:28am
I'm not so sure why some here think alcohol addiction is any different than any other drug addiction.
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-16-2007
Thu, 01-29-2009 - 5:48pm
Thanks to all for your advice and support. I do know that he is posting on another board- its strange how in these difficult times we are looking to complete strangers for advice! I am looking for a temporary place to stay to have some space to figure things out. Unfortunately we are in New York where housing is hard to find and very expensive. He is going to AA and possibly counseling.
I know that being together from a young age is not all its cracked up to be- in fact at my insistence we took a break for a year when we were in college, as I was scared of getting deeper into the relationship without having any other experience. We both dated other people, but eventually decided that we wanted to get back together.
Anyhow thanks for all your thoughts and advice.
iVillage Member
Registered: 08-02-2000
Mon, 02-09-2009 - 1:45am

I'm sorry you're going through this. I know it hurts.

I disagree very strongly with what some of the people have said in regards to alcohol and behavior. I know firsthand that it can and does cause people to do things they wouldn't normally do. I am a recovering alcoholic myself, and I know that there were many things I did while intoxicated that I would have never, ever done. Drove drunk, said things to people, made a fool of myself. What "normal" people don't understand is that alcohol affects alcoholics much differently than it does them. They can have a couple and that will be that. Alcoholics are not able to do that. Once alcohol gets in their systems, all bets are off. Who knows what will happen. I don't know your SO, but I do know alcohol, and if he says that's what it was, then it probably IS what it was. I can't say for sure without knowing him, but if he hadn't been drinking that night, it probably would have never happened.

With that in mind, I'm not saying that you should just forgive and forget and chalk it up to the booze. If he truly is sorry and doesn't want anything like that to ever happen again, then he needs to prove it by getting help for the real problem...his alcoholism. I would tell him that unless he is willing to go to treatment, then you won't be with him. AA is great and can help, but, really, treatment first is what is probably necessary. I know it was with me. And I would suggest inpatient treatment. Remove him from his world for 30 days, free of booze, with therapy and support. He CAN get better if he truly wants to. But he has to want it for himself, not just to keep you.

You can survive this if you're willing to also do work on your end. I highly suggest Al-Anon. It can help you.