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A cheating partner with depression

Community Member


I am writing here because I don’t know who else to talk to.

My partner recently cheated on me - for the second time. I am not sure whether to try and work it out or go our separate ways. He is my only family here as all of my family is overseas. What bothers me is not the act of having sex, but the context in which it all happened. The first time I was overseas looking after my dad who was dying of a terminal cancer. He cheated on me with a friend - an obese, not a very attractive girl. This time, he cheated on me with a person at work - who has some problems in her marriage.
my partner has depression, is being medicated for it and is seeng a professional. However, the last three years have been full of emotional abuse. I have been looking after him emotionally, helping him out financially, and just being there. I am completely lost - one part of me just wants to erase him from my life and the other, caring part of me understands depression. Again, not an excuse for all the poor behaviours over the last few years. We just moved into our new house and it is all about to get very complicated if/when we separate. I don’t know where to start and how to get my thoughts straight. I’m very lost, so any objective opinion will be great. I don’t want to get my family into this, because they will only bring all the unnecessary negative emotions in my life.

5 Replies 5

Blue Voices Member
Blue Voices Member

Hi Lily73,

I'm so sorry it's taken this long for you to receive a response in the forum. Relationships can certainly be difficult, especially when you are supporting your partner through their depression.

Have you had a talk to him about how his behavior is affecting you? I know this can be a really tricky conversation to start with someone who is also going through a tough time, but you also need a bit of give and take in a relationship. You need to look after yourself as well.

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hello Lily73,

I'm sorry to hear you are having issues with your partner and have nobody else to talk to. It can be so hard, especially if your family are overseas, to work out what to do in difficult situations like this.

It is really good that you can understand how depression might be a factor, but isn't an excuse for his poor behaviour. It sounds like you understand that you deserve respect and that you want more from him.

As socialmoth said, having a conversation is probably a good place to start. Whether you separate or stay together, a conversation will probably end up happening, and it is often helpful to have that conversation early to get a lot of the 'facts' about what you both want, out in the open. While they're all whirling around in your head, it can be easy to get very lost.

It's a really tough situation to be in and I really hope you can find the right way forward soon. Let us know how you go.


Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Hello Lily, and I'm too sorry your comment has been missed but pleased you have posted.

Whether or not cheating on a partner/spouse can be overcome the first time may depend on the situation you're in and if it happened for some specific reason is a decision these two people need to decide on, however cheating once again for the second time is indicative on what may continue to happen, the trouble is you've just bought a house together, but there will be problems even if this didn't happen.

Emotional abuse in a relationship is not a pleasant way to live with someone, especially if you're supporting him financially only complicates the situation you're in, as well as trying to cope with his depression and if he has been unable to tell you the truth only makes this difficult for you to know what to do.

If he was remorseful the first time and getting help for his depression, then perhaps this could be overcome by talking with a counsellor together, however, there are times when the negatives outweigh the positives, and this is something you need to decide on.

Whether or not your relationship can recover is up to how you believe but I would be consulting with a lawyer on a no win no fee basis to talk about your options, as well as talking with your doctor.

Take care.


Hi everyone

Thank you for your responses. I think it’s good to be heard. I don’t feel comfortable talking to a psychologist, my family nor friends as this is also very humiliating. I am not a victim and don’t need to be pitied. So I figured, complete strangers will be the most efficient strategy for me.

my partner is remorseful about his actions, is seeing a psychologist and being medicated with anti-depressants. He’s got all sorts of issues besides that - believing his childhood traumas have determined him as a person he is today, addictions to sugar, coffee, porn.
I don’t think anyone will say to me to run away asap and look after myself, but I think I need a kick up my ass. I’m a successful professional and have always been very independent, but it seems to me that having no family here is making this step very hard for me. His family is very supportive, but they are not my family and I feel very confused when I’m around them.

We have had many conversations with my partner, during which he feels a need to defend himself. I don’t like his addictions, self pity and being self-centered. There are many things that I’d like to be different about him, and I think if he devotes his full attention to changing his bad habits and be more supportive, it’s worthwhile saving (or an attempt to save) this relationship. He is a good guy and an accomplished professional, but he has so many issues!!

Community Champion
Community Champion

Hello Lily73,

I am glad you feel heard, even if you don't feel comfortable talking to a psychologist, family or friends. I do hope that such support avenues will be available to you one day, as I have personally found confiding in all three very helpful in different situations. I understand you feel this is all very humiliating, and I am really sad to hear you feel that way. It sounds dreadful.

It is concerning that he feels the need to defend himself, and that he seems to exhibit self pity and self-centeredness. I hope you can also assert your own independence here as it sounds like that is going to be necessary, if his priority is himself and not you.

Let us know how you are going, whenever you feel like you need to be heard.