(Closed) Finding out your SO cheated in a previous relationship

posted 5 years ago in Relationships
Post # 2
289 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: October 2016

I mean, he did come clean to you without anyone having to tell him to do so. That’s just me playing the devil’s advocate though. I think that people are fully capable of change.

I guess it’s really up to you. Approach this relationship with caution or leave, it’s your call. You know him better than us so we don’t know how he’s been with you, what his character is like, or what else he’s done. So, it’s really what you think is best.

Post # 3
8021 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2010

A one time stupid thing, maybe. But if it went on for months, he was making a daily choice to be a douche and purposely hurt someone. I’m not sure I could live with that.

Post # 4
5148 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: January 2010

Well, in my view, NOT everyone who has cheated is “always a cheater” as the saying goes. This is particularly so, for me, when it involved a past relationsip, a different time, a different stage of life, and so on. While I am not someone who would be able to move on from someone cheating ON me, I was not someone who personally necessarily cast out anyone who ever cheated ever in their lives from my own dating pool (I am married now, and it is not relevant to current choices but I have dated men before who had cheated many years before me).

I think the important thing is the context, the timing, and whether they have learned and grown from the experience. I am not sure what you meant by “uh, whatever that means”, but people can learn a lot from their experiences and choices, both the positive and negative. Personally, if they are honest, forthright, shows some emotional awareness and growth from the experience, admits their mistakes, their vulnerabilities, have been able to self reflect on the experience, re-evaluate their own boundaries and personal values, than yeah, I personally would appreciate their honesty and vulnerability. This goes for ANY relationship choices they have made honestly. Whether it involved cheating or not. Cheating is not the only “terrible thing” someone can do in a relationship. If they blamed the cheating entirely on their partner, did not show any growth, it was very recent, and so on, well, the reason I would see them differently would not be just because of their cheating in the past. 

As for your comment on whether there are ANY guys out there who don’t cheat…there are both men AND women out there who have cheated. There are men AND women out there cheating now. There are also men AND women who have not cheated at all and never will. There also men AND women out there who have cheated in the past but won’t automatically ever do it again, and men AND women out there who have never cheated YET but will one day. I can’t tell you what to do, but I would say if you ARE going to always be looking over your shoulder and you DO see him completely differently, I think it is best you do let this relationship go. 

Post # 5
121 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: July 2017

Honestly, I’m not a believer of the “once a cheater, always a cheater” thought. People change. People grow up. When you find the one for you, everything else prior doesnt matter.

Post # 7
1939 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: May 2018 - City, State

I cheated in a past relationship (full on emotional affair) and when I finally woke up and realized what I was doing I did everything I could to make it right. Looking back it’s the absolute shittiest thing I’ve ever done and I regret it terribly. I would be heartbroken if my fi couldn’t accept a mistake I made 5 years ago. Just a different perspective. 

Post # 8
3470 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: July 2012 - The Gables Inn, Santa Rosa, CA

View original reply
SunnierDaysAhead:  Yes, there are guys out there who don’t cheat, and you deserve to be with one of them! If he didn’t have the nerve to end things with his last girlfriend and instead went out to seek emotional support from someone ELSE when that relationship wasn’t solid – how can you ever trust that he wont do the same thing to you and just find a new way to justify? It’s shocking the # of cheaters who’s explination for not ending things or telling the truth is because they don’t want to “hurt” their partner.  

I’m sorry, but this is a HUGE red flag to me.  I don’t believe in divorce except in cases of abuse or abandonment, so I’d never even consider marrying someone who has already displayed that he’s willing/capable of violating a partner’s trust. 


My husband dated A LOT before we met – and by a lot, I mean pretty much our entire town (yes, it’s small – but still!) He “got around” but when he decided he wanted to be with someone else, he ALWAYS did the right thing and ended each relationship before starting a new one.  It’s a hard thing to do – ending a relationship, especially if things are 90% good and you just want “new” or “different” but there ARE people out there who would NEVER violate this level of trust.  

Post # 9
6906 posts
Busy Beekeeper

There are absolutely guys out there who don’t cheat, and I wouldn’t waste my time with someone who did, even if I appreciated their honesty.  Especially given your history, do you really want to be wondering every time he’s late coming home?  A little peace of mind goes a long way.  I know people can grow up and become a better version of themselves, but for me, I’ll take the one who was grown up to begin with (no offense meant to poster above, speaking far more generally).

Post # 10
309 posts
Helper bee

People make mistakes and shouldn’t necesarily be judged for their past. His Girlfriend forgave him and they moved beyond it. Maybe you should talk through it and find out what was going on that led him to make the choice. I’m actually way more okay with him having an emotional affair or a long time thing than a one time or drunken mistake. If someone could casusally throw away a relationship because they got drunk…. thats way different.

I’m not saying what he did was okay, but do you want to throw away the chance at a wonderful future for a mistake he made with someone else? I would be honest with him and how it makes you feel and if you find yourself still falling for him go with it, if not walk away.

Post # 11
1309 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2015

You’ve posted a couple of threads about this guy that make him sound like nit a good choice for you. This should seal the decision i would think. 

Post # 12
136 posts
Blushing bee

My SO has cheated on a few of his past relationships, which he told me about a little into our relationship.

But he’s made huge personality changes since then, and I don’t want to hold on to this one aspect of his past while praising him for his changes. I don’t feel like I can or should have it both ways.

We’re very much on the same page that cheating is unacceptible, I trust and love him, and that’s that.

If he messes up, his loss.

Post # 13
9076 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: December 2012

I was a stupid kid in high school and cheated on my then boyfriend with a dude I met on a cruise. Wasn’t anything serious, we kissed a bit.

The pain I felt after he found out because I was even more stupid is a pain I can still recall today. I’d never, ever, ever do anything like that again. Especially not to my husband, he deserves it.

People can change.

Post # 14
219 posts
Helper bee

Meh. I think it depends on if it will affect you or not. But in all honestly, I cheated before meeting/dating my Fiance and I wouldn’t cheat on my Fiance now. I personally think if you’re with the right person who fufills your needs you won’t be tempted to cheat. When I cheated, I was 18 and just off to college and didn’t want to be in the relationship at all anymore.

Post # 15
366 posts
Helper bee

Personally, being my anxious insecure self, I would forever question whether he would someday cheat on me. So it would probably be a deal breaker for me.

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