One of my friends has been with a guy for five years, and during that time they’ve broken up twice because he’s been caught cheating. Now they’re about to get married. “I know what you’re thinking,” my friend told me, “but he’s changed.” That’s what he insisted the first time, too.
Forgiveness and trust are a pretty tall order after you’ve cheated on your partner. Imagine having to be in a relationship that’s filled with second-guessing, and a nagging uncertainty every time a text arrives.
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Preliminary Sidenote: Not all cheaters are evil. It’s tempting to jump ship early while a relationship is cracking apart. If it’s doomed anyway, then an affair will likely only move things along. Or, let’s say you shacked-up young, and never had a chance to sow your oats before spending 20 years with the same partner—possibly your only partner. So things start to build up, eventually boil over, and boom, you’re in someone else’s bed. That kinda does sounds like torture. But who knows, in such a scenario an affair might even help rekindle the relationship. Just sayin, is all.
What we’re really talking about, though, is one of the worst kinds of betrayal. Your partner has:
- Been naked with someone else and come home to sleep in your bed
- Whispered pillow-talk in someone else’s ear
- Disclosed intimate information about you
- Lied to your face
- Lied to your friends
- Lied to your face in front of your friends
- TOTALLY betrayed your trust
And if you’ve cheated more than once? Especially after you’d already been caught? That’s a bit different. Once you go down that route, is it so unrealistic that you won’t be trusted again? Are you really working late? Are you really off to the store to buy milk?
Something else: there are serial-cheaters. No matter what they tell you, how sorry they are, how different they’ll be—unload them. Unless you feel like playing mother and shrink and victim all in one, you’ll only keep getting hurt. Protect yourself.
Which reminds me: if you’ve been a victim of infidelity you should get tested for STDs.
And check your bed for bedbugs!
Read: When a Lover Cheats: Relationship Repair for Gay Couples