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'I cheated on my husband and I'm paying for it'

Introducing Dr Love, who solves your relationship riddles in a confusing digital age

I have been in a relationship outside my marriage for the past 9 years. A year ago, I found out that the man I loved had cheated on me. In other words, I reaped what I had sown. I want to move on, but am unable to. It hurts me; I'm in pain and cry daily. We have spoken about this and I trust him. He is a good man, but his former love is back in his life. I know that this relationship is wrong and I really want to move on, but I'm too weak to do this. I want to talk to a counsellor so I can move out of this relationship. Please help me. — Name withheld on request

You reveal a lot of awareness about your current situation. You recognise that the relationship is wrong, admit that you have reaped what you yourself have sown, and also show willingness to speak to a counsellor. I'm not sure what I can say to make you move on, considering you have already taken steps in the right direction. It's normal to feel weak about ending a relationship of any sort after a decade. It's normal to feel vulnerable about ending something, irrespective of whether or not that is a moral decision. What I urge you to do, however, is speak to a marriage counsellor about how your legal partner is supposed to deal with this. You have to admit that he is as much a victim here as you claim to be. If your marriage isn't working out (and it clearly isn't, if you have had to look outside it for 9 years), why not try and fix it, or end it, before deciding what to do next? Why go through life in an unhappy relationship when it benefits neither person? It's only when you figure out what you want for yourself that you will be able to do the right thing and walk away from something unhealthy forever.

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