Last May I found out that my bf of 3 years had been seeing another woman (let's call her Claire) for 6 months. They were in love. They had a primarily emotional relationship and didn't have sex (I had him tested anyway). This was because for those six months I was very ill and it was unclear that I was ever going to get better. I was not pleasant to be with during those months and I suppose I couldn't provide for him the emotional things that go into a relationship. When I found out, he dumped Claire to stay with me even though I gave him an honest choice between the two of us.
For 8 months Claire continued to send both of us messages, trying to get back in touch with my bf. It was awful. Every time she would send a message we would send back the same reply: "You know I don't want to talk to you."
A month ago I found out that my bf had been talking to Claire again. Apparently she had texted him something extremely pathetic and he felt guilty and like he had to talk to her. He said he wanted closure. The emotional affair this time was just over skype/texting although they planned to meet but never did. The affair only lasted two months until my bf's cat died and he realized that she wasn't a very good person because she didn't care at all about the cat. I found out a month ago about the second affair and he had already ended it a month before that. He insists that his intention the second time was not to have an affair.
Throughout all this, of course I didn't know about the second affair, and we were looking for engagement rings. He asked my parents' permission to marry me and they were extremely excited. My parents know about the first affair but not the second. Since the second affair, we've worked things out and my mom gave me an heirloom diamond and had it set in a ring that my grandfather made (he was a jeweler but there are very few of his rings left). So we have a ring, but no proposal yet.
We were supposed to go and get the ring from my parents today. Last night I caught the bf talking to an ex girlfriend (not Claire). It was just small talk but because of all the Claire stuff I got extremely threatened and upset. This is especially because the ex girlfriend was bringing up past events that happened when they were dating and sort of reminiscing. My bf mentioned me several times in the conversation and behaved well throughout the entire thing. Despite this, I decided to let my parents hold onto the ring until we got ourselves into pre-martial counseling.
I'm starting to really doubt that this guy is the guy for me. He's incredibly flirtatious in public to the point that it's embarrassing to me. He's apologized a million times and bought me gifts and stuff but it's not enough.
The thing is, he's great with the little things. He's affectionate, good in bed, loving, and remembers important events and celebrates them. He's handy and sweet and I love his family. It's just the big things that suck.
Do you think I need pre-marital counseling? Do you guys think that pre-marital counseling is even worth it?