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For over a decade, David Tian, Ph.D. — a uniquely qualified therapist, life coach, and former university professor — has coached tens of thousands of people from over 87 countries to achieve happiness and success in their relationships, dating, psychology, and lifestyle.
Dr. Tian has been featured in international media, as well as co-hosting a radio show on national radio and a weekly dating advice column in a national newspaper in Singapore.
The show, “Man Up: Masculinity for the Intelligent Man” (https://www.davidtianphd.com/blog/), is David’s way of helping as many people as possible enjoy empowering and fulfilling lives, while contributing to the global understanding of masculinity in modern times. In the show, he takes your questions posed in the Man Up private Facebook group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/manupcommunity/) and answers based on his experience coaching tens of thousands of students around the world for over a decade.
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How To Handle An Ex Who Cheated On You
David Tian Ph.D. tells us what happens when we are in denial of the truth.
David Tian Ph.D. explains why we haven’t yet recovered from the break-up.
In this Man Up episode, David Tian Ph.D. lays down what we need to learn from this cheating ex situation.
David Tian: Boom! Stop. I’m David Tian, PhD. And in this video, I answer the question: How to handle an ex who cheated on you. Welcome to Man Up Episode 158.
Masculinity for the intelligent man. I’m David Tian, PhD, and this is Man Up!
Hey! It’s David Tian, PhD. And for over the past ten years, I’ve been helping hundreds of thousands of people in over 87 countries attain success, happiness and fulfillment in life and love, and welcome to Man Up Episode 158. It’s a Monday here in Singapore. Back at the office, staying late. I don’t know if you can tell it’s dark, but it’s late, and I just finished a three-day, 20+ hour intensive weekend event that I led over the weekend that included a very late night in the nightclub.
My voice is a little hoarse from that, but I’m glad to be back in the swing of things and getting back into putting out the Man Up episodes. I know there’s a hiatus of a few weeks. Now we’re back on it. We’ll be continuing to shoot. My aim is always three times a week, so look out for more.
Now, answering a question, and another break up question. By the way, there’s a free video course I’ve made that will be up shortly. And by the time you watch this, it’s already going to be up on how to recover from your breakup. This guy needs to hear that. So, make sure that you join the private Facebook group so that you can get access to that free video course on how to recover from a breakup. I go into quite a lot of detail and step-by-step walk you through the process.
I’ve coached so many men over the years in doing this, and many of them who come to me had their eyes open to how much they needed to learn largely through a breakup or through getting dumped or a bad break-up. I’m very experienced with leading guys through that process. So, get that free video course.
Let’s get into the question. It is long. I’m going to have to summarize it. He says he’s 24 years old. Darryl says, “I’ve had two serious relationships in my life. One was about two years in length. We were high-school sweethearts. The next was a five-year relationship that came about in college.
The five-year relationship ended a month ago. While it was a very tough breakup, it made me confront some ugly truths about myself. I was moving along while coming to terms with it.”
“Then I learned that the night before we broke up, she made out with a guy at the bar and then was romantically pursuing him days out from the relationship. I confronted her and she denied that that was why she left me. But at this point, I really don’t care. It’s over anyway. The reason why it’s not important so long as I grow from this. But obviously, learning that during a breakup is pretty hard to hear.”
So, here this defense of this right? He says all of this, and he’s writing to me, and he’s telling us about this, but then he says, “Ah, but I don’t really care. It’s over anyway.” You know, whenever somebody says that, you know it’s really actually hurting them and they’re just in denial. This is bad. Obviously it hurts you. Obviously it matters or you wouldn’t be fucking writing about this. You wouldn’t even be thinking about this, so stop being in fucking denial.
He says, “But obviously, learning that during a breakup is pretty hard to hear.” It’s not obvious. If you were going through the breakup recovery process properly, this should help you recover from the breakup and instead – because of your ego which I’ll get to later, it hurts you. So, young guys, 24 years old, relatively young, still very much about his ego. He’s got to be ‘the man’. He’s got to be the cool guy, he’s got to be the high-value guy instead of confronting reality and being able to see things in his naiveté from before. That’s the only way you’ll grow up.
And instead, you cling to this notion of the way that your relationships were and the way women ought to be. By the way, we’re going to be releasing very shortly a long talk I gave on stage, and it was going to be leading you through waking you up to the fact that you’re still holding onto this belief that there is a Santa Claus. I’m going to pull back the veil and show you the truth about relationships, about women, that you need to learn.
“Cut to last night. A good buddy of mine lets me borrow his phone to text a mutual friend. In an unrelated text message, I saw mentions of me and my high school ex. At first, I laugh and wonder if they’re joking around about trying to set us up on a date, so I open it. Apparently, in the chaos of my breakup, mutual friends discovered that my high school ex cheated on me in high school.”
“I don’t know why, but it fucking crushed me.” Again, he’s always finding out that you weren’t number one, crushes you, right? “This was high school. That breakup was long ago. So, whenever people are saying stuff like this, “I shouldn’t be hurt. I shouldn’t…” It doesn’t matter whether you should. There’s no such thing as, “You shouldn’t…” That’s what you feel.
You must go to where you are, and I gave a talk on this a long time ago about being in denial of where you are emotionally and psychologically. If you’re in denial, you’re never going to grow. A lot of guys, because of their ego, they pretend they’re stronger than they are, whether it’s physically or emotionally. And I gave the analogy of going to the gym and lifting way too heavy for what you should be, like your strength. And bicep curls, swinging around, swinging the weight – I see this so often – instead of maintaining good form and curling a much lighter weight but actually having good form so that you can actually build real muscle in the place that you’re aiming for, you’re trying to isolate, for the bicep curl.
And instead, you’re using all of these – your back to bicep curl. And it’s just because you see these other guys lifting that amount of weight, and your ego prevents you from going to the truth of where you are and that prevents you from growing. And it’s the same emotionally and mentally. If you pretend to know more than you do, you’re never actually going to learn.
I can see you’re fighting that. You want to learn, Darryl, but right now you’re saying, “I shouldn’t.” It’s sort of like saying, “I shouldn’t be lifting this lightweight, but I feel like that heavyweight is too heavy.” That’s what you’re basically saying.
And I’m saying, “Fuck the heavyweight. Go to the weight that you can handle.” Right now, these things are hurting you and you need to understand why. Not say, “Oh, I shouldn’t.” Whether there should or shouldn’t have emotions – what emotions do you have and what emotions do you want to have? That’s all there is. There’s no should or shouldn’t. It depends on what your goals are, what you want in your life.
“I don’t know why, but it fucking crushed me. It shouldn’t. This was high school. That breakup was long ago, but it just made me realize that I literally did not know these two people I dated and loved. It has completely tarnished all of my memories with each of them.” So, the scales are falling from his eyes. He’s starting to see a blurry picture of reality, but he’s not accepting what he’s seeing. You need to watch the new video of the keynote talk I gave on stage, walking you through the reality of women in relationships.
That should be posted right around the same time as this. If it’s not, we’re going to try to get it out before this comes out. Otherwise, it will be out in a couple of days, so look out for that. “I generally cannot look back on either relationship now and remember them fondly.” Yeah. It’s true. And that’s fine, that’s called ‘reality’. Why must you look back on them fondly? Why must you have these things? You’ve got to let go of this fantasy, of this boyhood dream.
And I cover all of these and why it’s so appealing for the nice guy to hold onto the myth and those ideals, illusions, and I cover that in a much longer talk from the stage. And he says, “And that’s really rough in the context of this breakup, because I used those memories of my prior relationship to cope. It ended amicably, and so while I reel from the breakup, I would remember the previous relationship in a, “Well, at least I had one good relationship” kind of way.”
What the fuck do you care, whether you had one good relationship? What is this ego again, right? Who cares? Why are you afraid of failure? And you’re 24-fucking-years-old. Who cares if you had a good relationship? Did you have a relationship scorecard? Are we walking around saying, “Did you have a good relationship?” “Oh, I win.” What do you win if you have a good relationship? So fucking what? Why is that even something that you should take pride in? I don’t even understand.
But I know the ego is there. The ego is there throughout his message. The ego is going to prevent you from learning. The ego prevents you from seeing reality. The ego prevents you from going and maturing as a man. And then he says, “It’s shattered that. In the last month, the only two women I’ve ever loved on this planet were revealed to simply not be in any way, shape or form who I believed them to be.” And he’s going like, “How do I deal with this?”
You deal with it just like you deal with the truth. It’s sort of like when you were young, hopefully you discovered that there’s no Santa Claus and your world was shattered, or like the tooth fairy. It’s basically like, you have this myth and this illusion, this false ideal, and it’s like the myth that comes from Disney. And I go into extreme detail on this in the longer talk from the stage, which we are releasing. So, look out for that. I think it will be entitled something like, “The Scientific Findings About the Reality of Women and Sex and Relationships” or something.
Anyway, it’ll be on this channel. Come back to this channel and look, or just click on this channel somewhere, wherever it is, and look for that longer talk. Darryl, you need to hear that. And anyone who has a similar issue, where you’re discovering that ex was cheating on you towards the end of the relationship, or she bounced back really fast and you were shocked. “I thought we were in love.”
There’s another question that I’ve been asked to do. I’ve been meaning to do that one, so I’m going to do it after this video, which is also going to be partly answering Darryl’s question here. But I’m going to end this one here. Darryl, you need to learn two things. First of all, you need to learn how to actually recover from a breakup, not covering up for your ego using false bullshit.
Trying to recover from the current breakup by saying at least you had one good relationship, that’s just total bullshit ego. In fact, whatever recovery you have, as you’ve discovered, is a false recovery. You haven’t really recovered. You’re just covering over your ego and pride to say, “At least I had one. I had one for two.” And in fact you’re like, “Oh no, I went 0 for two. My life is a ruin and I have no success with relationships.” Screw that.
And this other thing about – what losers think – that losers always look for black and white, and you see a lot of losers in red pill subculture, losers in MGTOW subculture where they say they get burned by one, two, three, 50 girls, who fucking cares? Because they keep picking a certain type of woman and they get bitter. And because they get bitter, they just paint all three billion women with the same brush. And I’ve seen this so many times.
And they’re just dumb because they’re naive, they go with the one-brush, black or white, instead of realizing life is grey. Life is a continuum. And you my friend, sometimes you’re an evil bastard. You my friend, sometimes you’re a good angel. And if behavioral economics and social psychology have taught us anything, it’s that we don’t have an enduring personality that never changes, like some core character that never changes, that was given to us from birth.
There’s no evidence from that. Instead, we have some genetic predispositions that might get triggered by certain situations, but definitely the situation and the environment that we’re in at that present moment dictate, in many ways, how we will react and what kind of personality we have. People are not just good or just bad.
It really depends on the situation. Sometimes you’re good, sometimes you’re bad. Sometimes, these young women at that time – because of their immaturity, and also because of ego, and pride, and looking for fleeting feelings, and just wrong notions about relationships and love and sexuality, they do things that will end up being hurtful towards you, and these women might regret when they look back in their 30s on what they did to you on their 20s. Or maybe they won’t regret because they lack empathy because they’re psychopaths or something like that.
The fact of the matter is, life is a lot more complex than you think. But right now at 24 years old, you’re finally discovering that you had this idealized notion of relationships, and women, and girls, because you were naive. Women mature faster even in their 20s. They mature faster than males. And she’s moved on. She’s done these things towards the end of the relationship that you didn’t know about, and now you’re like, “Oh no, there’s no tooth fairy.”
Welcome to the real world. You’re beginning to see it, but you haven’t accepted it yet. And if you can’t accept it, you won’t actually see it. You’ll just be like you got rose-tinted glasses. This is like blurry. You have to now see it clearly, and the way to see it clearly is to first learn the knowledge.
Get the knowledge of the reality of women, and the reality of you, and the reality of sexuality in relationships. And I’ve made a longer talk on that. We made a video of a longer talk on that, so look out for that. Also, get the breakup recovery course. You can get that by just clicking the link to join the Facebook group. We approve requests every day. And then go to the pinned post or tap the cover image and you’ll find the link to the free video courses. Pretty easy.
We have noticed that quite a few people would join the group and then not tap the pinned post. So, if you’re viewing it on your phone, the pinned post is compressed and it just says, in very small print, “Pinned Post.” Which totally defeats the purpose of having a pinned post. I don’t know what the fuck Facebook was thinking. So, you must look for that right under the cover image and tap pinned post or you can just tap the cover image, view cover image, and then the text accompanying the cover image will have a link to send you to the free video courses.
Join that. Join the group. Get your free video courses. And I’ll see you inside the Man Up Facebook group. Until then, Man Up!