How can I get over my ex-boyfriend cheating on me?

It's been almost a year since my ex-boyfriend broke up with me after he cheated on me many times. I had found out about a month before, but I hadn't told him I knew because I didn't want us to break up. I used to have very low self-esteem, and I think it might have to do with my dad being an alcoholic. My father cheated on my mother when I was little. I wonder if this pain has to do with that. My ex-boyfriend and I were only dating for five months, but I still can't get over this betrayal. I'm not sure what to feel to get over it: forgiveness? Hate? He helped me financially after our break up by lending me $3000, so I'm grateful for that. I still hate him for what he did and still want him to like me although we're not even talking anymore. We follow each other on Instagram and that's it. I feel like I still need his validation. This is haunting me day and night. I want to focus on my new relationship and goals, but I keep obsessing over this and keep checking my ex-boyfriend's Instagram and Facebook. I feel so bad and keep having nightmares.

Sherry Katz, LCSW
Sherry Katz, LCSW
Couples and Family Therapist, LCSW

The dilemmas you present are giving you a great chance to understand your true reasons for being in a relationship.

Continue developing some points you've written here.

That you grew up sensing and/or witnessing your mom's emotional pain from your dad cheating on her, very likely set a standard in your inner self, to expect similar circumstances in your relationship life.

This is a natural dynamic which happens for all of us.  What we observe in our growing up households is what we understand as "normal", no matter how bad it actually is.

After all, children don't have the ability to separate that what their own parents do, is wrong compared with the rest of our culture.

It is natural to long for a relationship.

What you have the chance to do now, is distinguish the reasons for your longing.

Is it to attach to someone who has hurt you, hasn't shown you any understanding of having hurt you, and whose validation, even if he says validating words, has little meaning because people who validate are not the ones who harm us?

If you're able to teach yourself that those who love us do not harm us, and to develop new expectations for yourself of feeling good from how your partner treats you, then you will be showing yourself a road that will benefit you for your entire lifetime.

The information above is intended as general information...  (more)The information above is intended as general information based on minimal information, and does not constitute health care advice. This information does not constitute communication with a counselor/therapist nor does it create a therapist-client relationship nor any of the privileges that relationship may provide. If you are currently feeling suicidal or are in crisis, call 911 or proceed to your local emergency room.

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