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While we were broken up I slept with another man, can our relationship work again despite what I've done?

Tagged as: Breaking up, The ex-factor, Troubled relationships<< Previous question   Next question >>
Question - (9 November 2012) 1 Answers - (Newest, 9 November 2012)
A female United Kingdom age 30-35, *1sha writes:

Hi all,

I've spent this whole year breaking up with my boyfriend of 3.5 years. He's Egyptian Muslim and I'm white 'Muslim'. We got to the stage where it was get married or break up. I wanted to get married and fought him to do it for months. He was also fighting his family (who disapprove of me bc I'm white) and getting nowhere.

Our relationship became just about fighting every time we saw each other and he ended it in July. I bombarded him with messages, went to his house, sent emails etc. He ignored most of them.

Then in August I made myself busy. At this stage my ex-boyfriend realised his loss and started contacting me again with emails, texts, phone calls.

I was too angry and hurt so I ignored him. On his birthday in September I deliberately booked a flight to Italy for one day and only sent him one text message, ignoring his calls and messages.

When I returned I started dating someone. A christian guy. Great family. Successful. Good looking. But no chemistry between us. While I was dating him my ex-boyfriend was still sending me messages, emails, calls. In mid-October he started proposing to me by text, email, calling my friends. He waited at my flat for hours to propose which I ignored. I hadn't told him I had a new boyfriend but I had told him to stop contacting me. I think part of me felt ashamed for moving on so rapidly.

He came to my flat one day when the new guy was there and I had to tell him it was my boyfriend. He left immediately and after that sent a few messages asking me to talk to him so we could have peace and resolution. I ignored these too.

A week later I met a mutual friend who told me he had been on lots of dates with Egyptian girls.

The following week (1 month) after meeting him I slept with the new guy (3 times in one night) after we had spent the day together. I'm not sure why I did it that night. I had stayed there before and not slept with him. I think I wanted to feel close to someone again. We didn't really have much in common and I didn't even find him very attractive or interesting. I felt awful straight after and left the next morning. I had a brief phone conversation with him a week later.

In the meantime my ex-boyfriend stopped contacting me and I had a chance to re-read all his messages. I was very distressed and went to his house. We spoke for several hours about all that had passed and somehow decided that we had both made big mistakes and we wanted to work on our relationship again.

I broke up with the new guy (which I knew that I had to do) and I am back together with my ex.

I've told him everything (even that it was 3 times in one night... I'm not sure why I told him that?!) and he is very hurt, humiliated, betrayed. I should mention that I was a virgin when I met my ex-boyfriend. I do love him and I am sure he loves me. When I was with the new guy I thought about my ex all the time and even cried sometimes for no reason. My ex tells me he dated only one girl and didn't even touch her bc he felt it was a betrayal to me and us. He has asked lots of questions about the new guy and the relationship.

I don't know how to deal with this situation and if we can go back to how happy we were before all of this trauma. My ex tells me he has morning terrors because he waked up from dreams about me. He has taken the time since our split to pray more, spend time alone and lesrn about himself. I'm really ashamed of what I have done (meaningless sex with a man I barely knew). Can this situation be saved?

Thank you for your help

View related questions: broke up, christian, muslim, my ex, text

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A male reader, anonymous, writes (9 November 2012):

Sorry, but the relationship will never be what it was before. And why should it? Things have happened, and things have changed. What you and your boyfriend need to understand is that the old relationship is GONE, and you two need to focus on rebuilding a NEW one.

This can be a relatively process or, a difficult process - depending on how your boyfriend takes things. It seems like your boyfriend is taking things somewhat rough here, and that is understandable.

You say that your BF was your first. Being his first, he didn't have to imagine you with any other man. Now that you have been intimate with another man, that is all that will be consuming his mind for sometime. He probably doesn't understand how you could be intimate with someone else soon after him, and it probably makes him feel hurt knowing that some other man enjoyed himself with you intimately. There is really nothing you can do to make him feel better, except to try to be understanding and to give him his space if he needs it.

Whatever you do, do not exacerbate the situation by commenting on the attractiveness of other males, putting yourself in situations where he may misinterpret you meeting/seeing another guy, etc. Basically, you have to walk on egg shells for a little bit. How long you are willing to do this is up to you. Do you put up with it for 1 month, 1 year, forever? Up to you.

As for yourself feeling guilty. Honestly, you were broken up and have nothing to feel bad about. It's not like you cheated on your BF, and you at least had the courage to break up with the other guy and not waste his time. Sure, you feel bad because you hurt your BF by being intimate with someone else, but you were single, you were seeing the other guy, and you weren't being some reckless girl going to bars and hooking up with strangers. Do not be too hard on yourself.

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