Katie had always been in love with Alex ever since she could remember. They were once next door neighbor. They went to the same preschool and high school before Katie moved out of the country for University while Alex went to a State College. When Katie returned, they picked up from where they left off, rekindling their love.
They got married, had two beautiful girls. Ten years into the relationship, everything suddenly changed for Katie. The romance died, communication began to wane. Dinner dates and movie nights halted. More responsibilities began to set in. The girls’ needs were to be catered for. Their aging parents’ retirement home cost fortunes. College fees have to be taken into consideration, alongside mortgage and other bills. Katie began to feel neglected as Alex was always working overtime. She was simply unhappy and began to feel resentment towards Alex. Most times, she got mad because Alex simply doesn’t understand how she felt when she tries to bring up the matter. Alex complained that she was being childish and immature. But Katie knew she was dying inside. Her life had become gloomy and dark.
While she was coming back from grocery shopping, she bumped into an old boyfriend of hers from College. Martins had just recently lost his wife to cancer. Katie and Martins got talking, they offered comfort to themselves. They met occasionally for coffee and sometimes, late dinner. It seems to Katie, Martins totally understands and appreciates her better than Alex does. Martins says the right things, does the right things for her.
One day, they drink too much and had a minor relapse. They had sex. They told themselves to leave as a one night-stand incident, both agreeing it was a mistake, promising to never talk about it. But it seems it was something that they couldn’t stop doing since they had opened the Pandora box. One thing led to the other, they started an affair. It lasted for four months before Katie realized the horror of her ways and how selfish she had been. Plagued with guilt and anxiety, she ended the relationship but Martins wouldn’t stop calling her. He started threatening to reveal their dirty little secret.
Couple sitting up in bed, both looking away Original Filename: couple.jpg
Faced with two options: To either reveal her infidelity to Alex or continue the affair with Martins, Katie was more confused than she had ever been in her life. She loves Alex and wants her marriage to work but she knows she had made a grave mistake. Would Her Husband Forgive Her For Cheating?
It takes more than just love to holds a relationship together. Love is never enough to heal the wound, eradicate anger, reconnect intimacy, repair communication and reposition the breach of trust in the case of Cheating. Once the foundation of a building is faulty, it takes a calculated time before the building collapses. Trust is the foundation for any kind of relationship and once that seal has been severed, the relationship can remain shaky till it finally crumbles. Absence of trust causes intimacy to suffer in the relationship, both emotional and sexual intimacy leaves gradually.
“Cheating is so much more than just sex” relationship expert, Lori Bizzoco explained. People cheat so as to avoid dealing with problems they are powerless to handle. They could also resort to cheating as a way of distracting themselves from the stress of work or family problems.
Our idea of Cheating varies from relationship to relationship. Some consider flirting with a random person or having simple thing such as coffee or dinner out without the knowledge of your partner as cheating. To others, Kissing, Sexual Involvement with another is perceived as Cheating. Most Infidelity cases are more personal, sometimes it borders on upbringing, values or agreement with your partners.
Cheating shakes any relationship as one thing that makes it unpalatable is the Secrecy. The sneaking around, lying about what you are doing, your whereabouts, who you are with is what kills the trust. Those things reveal the actual intention to cheat.
But then I ask, what about cheating that comes about as a result of the influence of drinks or drugs? Could that be overruled as Cheating? The truth is that it doesn’t excuse the fact that they cheated, but it could be questioned. Consider if the act of drinking or taking drugs was a onetime thing. Because cheating that comes as a result of one night stands can be overlooked as a mistake but still questioned.
Angry twenty something couple yelling at each other
If it isn’t, then it probably means that the person finds it as a way of dodging the bullet of consequences that comes with infidelity. They feel that since they are under the influence of either the drug or alcohol, they are not necessarily cheating as they are not conscious of what they are doing. Those kind of people feel they can get away with cheating as they see it as a means of escape just as the way drugs and alcohols are taken as a way to escape from the harsh realities of life, even if it is for a few moment.
Some of the reasons why people cheat are hilarious, some selfish and irrational. Because relationships are dynamic, there is a great possibility that one’s spouse actions might have contributed to result in cheating. Katie tried talking to Alex so many times about how she was feeling but Alex refused to even consider her. I caught a statement of a renowned psychologist, Esther Perel on Ted Talk on Infidelity and Unfaithfulness. She said that “…in an era where we feel we are entitled to pursue our desires… Because this is the culture where I deserve to be happy” I interpreted the statement to mean that we are so caught up in our quest to be happy that we put asides the consequences attached to being unfaithful. The need to be happy even for a few moment clouds the repercussions and pains that is sure to follow the act of being unfaithful. Some of the reasons for cheating include:
- 1 The Love has faded
- 2 Feeling of Neglect and Under appreciation
- 3 A Need To Restore Self Esteem
- 4 Anger
- 5 Setting Highly placed Bars
- 6 For Physical Sex
- 7 Absence of Set Boundaries
- 8 Fear of a break up
- 9 Give him the time and space he needs
- 10 Sit down together to address the issues that led you to cheating
- 11 He needs reassurance, give him that constantly
- 12 Get professional help with your partner
The Love has faded
Feeling of the lack of love is the strongest motivation to cheat. Statements like “I fell out of love”, “I wasn’t feeling us anymore” shows strong indication that the relationship with their partners has grown cold. Shula Melamed Ma MPHA, Relationship and Wellness Coach agrees that the loss of love could mean that the person becomes unappreciated and deprived of attention in the relationship.
Katie was desperate to reignite the once burning fire for her relationship that it overshadowed her need to seek professional advices. She wanted the romance back on track but she failed to handle it the right way.
Feeling of Neglect and Under appreciation
Dr. Caroline Madden, Marriage and Family therapist explained that a lack of the feeling of being loved, unappreciated and even, neglecting leads to Infidelity in marriages. Although Katie can never be excused for her actions, the feeling of being neglected and lack of attention led her to cheating on Alex.
In most cases, according to Dr Madden, the cheating partner wouldn’t want to break up so they feel cheating will be the perfect solution to getting the attention they lack from their partners.
A Need To Restore Self Esteem
A lot of partners cheat on their spouse due to the feeling of insecurity which may arises either in career, age or appearance. The thrill of sex helps them to feel self-worth even if is it quite temporary.
Others might just feel insecure about their relationship with their partners especially when they seem to be working with attractive people.
Angry twenty something couple yelling at each other
According to Infidelity Statistics 2018, 43 percent of American Marriages have faced infidelity as a result of anger and revenge. Anger at your partner for cheating or anger for lack of attention.
Setting Highly placed Bars
“We have never been more inclined to stray and not because we have new desires today, but because we love” explained Dr. Perel on Infidelity and Unfaithfulness. Setting high morals might result to our partners cheating. Once your partner detect that you want a change, someone that can challenge them intellectually, co-parent as well as become a good friend, they feel they need to find reassurance that they are relevant and worthy in the arms of another. Because they cannot measure up to the standard, they get someone that can help them feel secured.
For Physical Sex
Studies have shown that men are likely to cheat for just sex but when women cheat, it is because their needs are not met in the relationship. The psychological layout of men is quite different from that of a woman. A man can have sexual relationship with a woman without forming attachment but for a woman, it is different. Women cannot detach themselves from having emotional responses from their partners. When a woman cheats, it is personal.
Absence of Set Boundaries
Too much intimacy with a colleague of the opposite sex in the office might cause things to get out of hand leaving an opening for infidelity. People with weak boundaries fall prey to cheating because when physical and emotional intimacy is formed; it becomes too easy to form sexual intimacy.
Fear of a break up
”They know that if they get caught doing so, then it is going to bring a quick end to the relationship” Sex therapist, James Preece agrees that women are more likely to make statement with cheating than men. So rather than coming out clean, they prefer to resort to cheating.
Just as Dr. Easton, author of Ethical Slut has emphasized the need to work on your partner when things are shaky to create the relationship you want, it is advisable to talk to your partner about everything and anything affecting the relationship before it gets out of hand.
Not all cases of cheating are all about sex; it still doesn’t make it any less painful to the cheated partners. Your partner is really hurt, their trust broken but it possible to make the relationship work once again if cheater has realized their mistake and is ready to work on themselves. Cheaters tend to heap the blame on their partners; they try to be defensive, not ready to accept all the blame.
How do you go about getting his forgiveness and winning his trust back?
Give him the time and space he needs
The first thing you might want to do is to give your partner all the space and time they will need to come to terms with what you have done. “If the relationship is to return”, according to Psychologist Madeline Mason “it happens after a long period of time apart”
Don’t take that route of falling into the victim mode or self-blame, it would not solve the problem. Rather listen in patience as he expresses grief and anger.
Sit down together to address the issues that led you to cheating
Diana and Todd Mitchem, Relationship Coaches points out that “Lack of communication or misunderstanding causes anger and resentment, that after awhile of being bottled up can finally explode and lead …to have an affair”. This might be your own reason for cheating, accept that you are responsible for your actions.
He needs reassurance, give him that constantly
Like the saying goes “Once a cheater, always a cheater” If you are willing to turn things around in your relationship, keep reassuring him that you will never cheat on him again. Make him understand that it was a onetime incident you regret doing.
Show that you can be transparent, consult them for any decisions you will be taking. Your partner might start trusting you if they see how transparent and willing you are to make things work.
Get professional help with your partner
Talking it out doesn’t always solve the problem. Go see a marriage counselor as it best to get the advice of an expert to deal with the sensitive topics and situations.
Just bear in mind that therapy wouldn’t magically solve all the problems, you have to take the huge step first by forgiving your partner. Forgiving your cheating partner doesn’t mean that you totally erase the infidelity from your mind, what it means it that you are willing to think pass the hurt and consider the people (if there are children involved) that your decision will hurt by ending the relationship. Forgiveness is more your sake than your partner as it helps you release mental exhaustions as not forgiving is mentally exhausting. It also helps you trust again. You might not be with that same partner in a few years; it doesn’t mean you should carry the fear of being cheated upon to the next relationship. Forgive, that will give you the freedom to take the next step to either Stay in the Relationship or Walk Away.