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Should I forgive a cheat?

Sorry. this one is a little long-winded, but the details are important, I think.

In September 2008, my live-in partner of 3 years (he was 35, i was 31) took off on a four month holiday for work. Actually, only the first part of it was work, the rest was a holiday he was taking for himself, and I was joining him in South America in December. Before he left, he had been insanely busy with work. I helped him by cooking all of his, lunches etc, organising all of his travel plans, running errands for him, drafting emails for him, etc etc (and all when I had a moment spare, as I worked, and am studying full-time to be an artist). The night before he left, I stayed up all night with him at his office, helping him to meet his deadline .massaging his shoulders. When he left, he told me he had never loved me so much as that moment, that he didnt want to leave.

anyway. he had a history of maintaining flirty relationships with other women (ex-girlfriends, girls who were interested in him), and of not telling anyone about me, so trust was an issue for me when he left. for instance, a year earlier, i had almost left him when I discovered an email conversation with a girl at work (who i had never heard of and who had obviously never heard of me) where they were organising to meet up in the evening for a movie. Actually, that incident got worse. He stopped talking to her for a few months at the time, and then when my mother had a heart attack and i had to fly interstate to be with her (he didnt want to come as he thought he ‘wouldn’t have a good time"), after dropping me at the airport, he called her up straight away ( i discovered this by checking his phone, mistrust is a terrible thing, i know). anyway, as i say, i almost left, and then or relationship became better, i began to trust him more. there was still a little doubt, however, and I was still doing terrible things like checking his emails.

anyway, back to the trip. first stop was shanghai. he had left his mail open at home. i discover him emailing a woman he had been out drinking with, asking for her number. i don’t tell him i know, but i push him to tell me what he has been up to, who he has met. he lies, of course. i discover that he is using sites like hospitalityclub and couchsurfing to meet women. we have a skype conversation while he is still in shanghai. as we are talking and he is reassuring me that nothing is going on, i can see on his email him emailing a woman he has met on hospitalityclub to meet in a bar as we are speaking!!! finally i break it to him that i am checking his emails. he changes his password.

to cut a long story short, i meet him in south america in december, after an extended period of me having a gut instinct that he was cheating on me, but wanting desperately to believe in him. after a week together in south america, he leaves his computer open while he has a shower, and i can’t resist checking. in his email trash, i discover emails from a woman in montreal. one of the emails starts with "its been a long time since i was with a man…. and what a romantic proposal". i feel like throwing up. i march into the shower and demand an explanation. cornered, he tells me he met her in a bar, and slept with her. my world collapses. i scream, shout, kick punch and howl my eyes out. i am stuck in south america with him for 2 months.

i decide to contact this woman to see whether he is telling the truth, and discover more lies. he had tracked her down via couchsurfing. he had invited her to come away with him to New York. etc. etc.

i discover that he was meeting up with women all over the world during this trip. he claims that the woman in montreal was the only one he slept with, but i doubt it. i find emails of him meeting up with a woman in paris for dinner ‘ this will be my last opportunity to see you" he says.

i am wracked with so much despair in south america that i become very sick, and am left with a rare illness that has left scars on my face.

we return to sydney, and everything becomes awful. the love is gone, the trust is gone. he feels so guilty that i become a reminder of the fact that he is a shitty person, and he avoids me or treats me like crap. oi move out, and he doesnt stop me. more recently, he says that he thought me moving out was a good idea, as it would make it easier for us to break up. Silly me, i was doing it to save our relationship.

So, i go to counsellors, talk to friends, read every book about affairs that i can get my hands on, to work out ways in which to make the relationship work, he does nothing, and refuses to listen to me when i talk about it, or engage with the idea that he might have some work to do. i am desperate. i am falling out of love with him, in fact, i dont know if i have anything left to give.

he went away on another trip last year, with promises that this would be different. how would i know? i discover later (by that terrible trick of checking his email) that befo

Live in partner? since you’re not married, he didn’t take any vows and therefore is technically single. Seems like he can pretty much do as he pleases, it’s nice of you stay home and be there for him, after chasing all that pussy on the road he knows your’s is there waiting for him without the chase.