Hi! I'll be glad to help you with this issue.
And this is the key that I want you to use to reorient your view of what is actually happening. This view of relationships is something I see so often in couples therapy and it, unfortunately, almost always leads to disappointments and hurts, especially in our days. Your boyfriend's behavior early on in the relationship, for example, is so common today when commitment is seen as the opposite of fun and freedom in our society. Therefore, men rather often do the "fun on the side" behavior as they try to navigate these values and issues.
But relationships aren't really like china vases. They are like a lily plant that you put in the center of your garden. A lily plant is something that you have to nurture in order for it to grow. And sometimes we forget to water at the right time and sometimes we are careless or angry or stubborn, etc. But we move forward and nurture some more and it comes back to health and full bloom.
You have a man who affirms his love for you, has made his peace with commitment, and is now close to everything you want. But a Pandora's box was opened and you can't find a way to close it. So let me give you the tool:
You see the desire for other women in your mind with your man and you focus on one moment in time: his infatuations before you became his real girlfriend. You look at his early behavior in your mind and you see yourself being diminished.
I want you to reorient your view: when you think of him you need to focus on THE PRESENT: he chose YOU. he affirmed his love for YOU. he saw through his need for fun, freedom, immaturity to see how valuable YOU are.
I'm not talking about pretense. What I wrote above is not a pretense. It is the truth when you look at the present: he cares about you enough to pursue getting closer with you for the long term, not just a brief relationship. That is a truth. You need to be able to look at the truth and reality, not at the past. Look at the lily plant blooming and not the struggle to get to this good moment.
I want to end off by saying again that I want you to reorient your thinking. To be joyful and to look up to heaven if you are a religious person and thank G-d that He provided you with a boyfriend who has made the right choice in life and appreciates your love enough to want to be together. You have something to rejoice about.
This is how you let it go. You don't need therapy about this. You need to print out my answer and keep it with you and use it every time you have thoughts that make you feel sad about the past. You have what to rejoice about.
I wish you the very best!
My goal is for you to feel like you've gotten Great Service from me and the site. If we need to continue the discussion for that to happen, then please feel free to reply and we'll continue working on this. If the answer has given you the help you need, please remember to give a rating of 5 (Great Service) or 4 (Informative and helpful), or even 3 (Got the job done) button. This will make sure that I am credited for the answer and you are not charged anything more than the deposit you already made by pressing any of these buttons. Bonuses are always appreciated! If I can be of further help with any issue now or in the future, just put "For Dr. Mark" in the front of your new question, and I'll be the one to answer it. All the best, XXXXX XXXXX