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“Five years ago I met someone”

Five years ago I met someone I knew would be a huge part of my life forever. When I met him he was married and nothing happened. He was already considering a divorce. We remained friends and about a year after he separated from his wife we gave things a go. At the time he had young children and there is a 12-year age gap between us (he is older).

I found myself waiting around to see him whenever he had time for me. This eventually put a strain on our relationship and after a couple of months it ended. I didn’t take it well. Especially after finding out he was talking to another woman towards the end. However I knew I still wanted him in my life so we agreed to meet for coffee in a few months to salvage the friendship we had previously.

Another two years passed and we tried again. It didn’t work out for various reasons. We ended contact in early 2017. In early 2018 I had a devastating loss in my immediate family and on that same day, he messaged me to say he had lost his dad unexpectedly and just wanted to talk to me as I have always been his rock. At this point I had been in a relationship for 14 months and everything was great. He was also settled with someone.

Since then we have met a few times and he has told me that he is leaving his partner and moving abroad. He says he wants me to be happy but the last time I saw him he said that he always knew I was the one and now his kids are grown up, he would treat me the way I deserve. He said if I am happy with my partner then he will walk away. I told him I am and that I couldn’t give up what I have now and risk being hurt like I have twice before. He tells me that he knows what he gave up and the fact we can never completely cut ties, shows we are connected.

Before I met my current partner, I would have given up any relationship I was in for him as he has always been the one I loved. But now, I really know what security feels like and I trust my partner 100% which I have never had before. I am so confused because for five years he is all I have ever wanted. My partner had never done anything wrong but I don’t know if I will ever feel the love for him that I feel for the man who hurt me twice before. Do I give up something solid on a risk that he could change his mind for a third time?

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