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Simply Solo Spotlight: Once A Cheat Always A Cheat?

July 10, 2012

Today’s guest post is written by Grace Pamer, author of  Romance Never Dies, a blog which gives insights into the art of putting together the best marriage. Be sure to comment on today’s post and check out Grace’s blog!

Quick shameless plug: Do you have a story to tell? Advice to offer? Did you just have literally the worst date of your life and you must write about it? I’d love to have you as the next Simply Solo Spotlight! Find out how you can be the next writer for Simply Solo here!

Once A Cheat Always A Cheat?

Taking chances in love, rolling diceShould you trust a man who you know has, in the past, cheated on previous partners? Does he have a wandering eye that will never stop wandering? Is he destined to be a cheater forever? If you are dating a man like this, or considering dating one, you should ask yourself these and other important questions before it’s too late.

Define a cheat

In our society, we have made the word cheat into an instant; one-size-fits-all word for anyone who strays from a monogamous relationship. In addition, the word carries an incredible amount of baggage for such a small thing – a cheat is a stigmatized person, a man (it could also be a woman) who has violated someone’s trust, and now deserves to be looked down upon and despised by all who know his true nature.

Ah, but there’s the question: do you know his true nature? In order to give him the benefit of any doubt, you have to define what cheating means to you, and forget what it means to the rest of the world. We all know from the multitudes of dramas that we see in movies and TV shows that a cheater often has different motives for his behavior. In this case, art does imitate life to a degree – there all kinds of cheats.

There are cheaters who are clearly incapable of committing to a relationship and feel the need to have an affair. There are cheats who are forced into an affair because of indifference, ignorance, or neurosis on the part of their wives. And there are cheaters who are realistically dealing with a situation in which both partners have to look outside the relationship for affection, passion, and love. Which one is he?

Investigate the cheat

The only way you will ever know for certain which kind of cheat your man is will be by conducting your own inquiry into his life. Yes, it may seem unsavory, but it’s really protection for yourself in this crazy world. You will have to seek out old partners, friends, relatives, anyone who might be able to shed some light on his cheating past.

You are looking for reasons, motivations for what he did, and for any extenuating circumstances. Clearly at this point, if everyone you talk to tells you to get away from this guy as fast as you can, you probably should heed their advice. But if there is any doubt, and you really think you may have found someone to hold on to, you’re going to have to talk to him about it.

Get the cheat talking

Communication is the key to any successful relationship, but multiply that times ten for the woman with a cheating man. There is simply no substitute for an open, honest discussion about his past. Reassure him that you are not judging him for his past behavior, but that you are serious enough about him that you need to understand his past behavior.

If, for any reason, he is unable or unwilling to have a dialogue with you about the topic, you should probably assume that he has something to hide. If he simply admits to being a cheat, but he promises to be different with you, then you have another problem – whether or not to believe him.

Appeal to his baser instincts

If you choose to move forward with the relationship, you will have to take some steps to make sure that you have done your best to make it work. Keep the communication going and always let him know that you are available to talk. Try not to judge him and give him a safe way to let out his fears, feelings and frustrations.

Make sure that he knows that you are interested in meeting his needs and that your mission in life is to make a successful life together with him. Even if he was a cheat, he can change with your attention and love.

That’s my opinion, but what’s your take based on your experience? Once a cheat always a cheat or can people really change their spots for the right partner? Please leave your comments below as I’d love to hear your thoughts on this issue.

Copyright 2012. Simply Solo blog by Catherine Gryp. All Rights Reserved.


5 Comments leave one →
  1. Claudia permalink
    July 10, 2012 1:35 pm

    This part I have a serious issue with: “Make sure that he knows that you are interested in meeting his needs and that your mission in life is to make a successful life together with him. Even if he was a cheat, he can change with your attention and love.”

    That is an absolutely destructive and patriarchal message to send to women.

    Our mission in life is to be happy. PART of that is to foster relationships that equally meet our needs and their needs. Not to be subservient to their needs, at the expense of ours, in order to keep them from cheating.

    It is a well know fact that a woman’s enjoyment of sexual activity has far more to do with emotion and mindset than it actually does physically. Tired, not in the mood, angry, hurt, stressed, depressed, etc can easily mean an unfulfilled sexual experience to the point of resentment.

    For the rest, I do agree with. Yes. There are many different reasons people cheat. And no, a cheater isn’t always a cheater as long as they learned from the experience. Some people who have never cheated just as well may cheat in the future. It’s a risk you take no matter what.

    A person who cheats because something is wrong in the relationship – generally the most common – shows a lack of ability in dealing with conflict. All of us have made mistakes in that area. No relationship is without conflict, no matter how interested you are in meeting his needs.

    If their attitude is passing all of the blame onto the ex, you are going to have a lot more problems than just cheating. If the ex was a “crazy bitch,” chances are higher that hes gaslighting (minimizing their feelings by reframing them as being unreasonable), than she had any actual mental health issues.

    Another reason why people cheat that wasn’t mentioned is sexual incompatibility. It’s a much larger part of a relationship than what people give it credit for. Differences in sexual adventurousness, is just as important to the health of a relationship as things like wanting children.

    • July 12, 2012 6:29 am

      I did not mean to imply subserviance to their needs but I do believe it is important to demonstrate that you are willing to meet his needs in the same way he should know that he needs to meet yours. Relationships are a partnership and as such both sides need to demonstrate empathy and an acknowledgement that in this relationship, forget what is part, that their needs will be just as important. If the partner is willing to make an equal commitment then you have the basis for a loving relationship. It is give and take. If one partner demands all the attention then it is not going to work in the same way that if both partners are equally inconsiderate of the others needs that too is a recipe for disaster.

      Very good point on sexual incompatibility. Maybe I was coming at this from the stand point of most couples nowadays have at least explored this element of their relationship before committing to marriage. But yes as time goes on the levels of adventure can change and this does lead to strain in a relationship and no doubt to cheating if left unresolved.

      Thanks for your detailed comment.

  2. July 11, 2012 9:41 am

    I have to disagree with one small point. Nobody is “forced” into an affair, no matter what their spouse is or isn’t doing. It’s always a choice. The cheater who blames his spouse rather than himself is the one to watch out for. That said, the fact that someone cheated once doesn’t necessarily mean they will do it again. Understanding what happened and why it happened is important.

  3. July 12, 2012 6:20 am

    Good point Rosemary, maybe forced was the wrong choice of word, more like steered or seduced into it. Everyone does have choices but then I’ve seen one partner in a relationship unwilling to work on their marriage and be so cold as to be unbelievable. In that circumstance I would say the other partner was steered into an affair because he got tired of being the only one trying to work on the marriage and so in the end gave up.

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