Posted by: Just wondering.. | 2008/05/29

Consequences of cheating..

Do cheaters ever think about the consequences of their betrayal once they are found out? Those who choose to stay in the relationship to “work things out”…Do they realise that things could NEVER, EVER be the same again…no matter how hard you try? Counselling etc..only helps a bit. Memories will always be there..there wnll always be “triggers”. I’m a changed person since I was betrayed. I attend counselling, but I’m bot the same person I was.. Is is possible to trust again…? Is it possible to truly love the way I used to again?..I wonder…

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Posted by: fireblade1 | 2008/05/29

Anon, just a question: from a man's point of view, why does a man cheat when he does have it all: the sex, the relationship etc etc?
Honestly I sincerely hope that "Just wondering..." succeeds in her relationship. I've been where you are girl, and I left my hb 3 or 4 times - each time going back because I thought he could/would change. Well he didn't, his behaviour only improved for a few months and when he felt he'd "done enough" and I wasn't "getting over it" fast enough, the fights started.
I'm not trying to discourage you, I just hope your fiance is made of stronger, better stuff than my soon-to-be-ex. There are men who can pull this off when they've cheated, with love. patience and understanding (and a fair amount of grovelling) but others are just too weak and selfish. I hope yours is not one of the weak ones!
Good luck!

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Posted by: Just me | 2008/05/29

Oh and Anon . What about this thing about wanting to explore fantasies?? I’ve heard that’s one reason too, why men cheat!..and that’s got nothing to do with not getting enough, or good sex!

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Posted by: anon | 2008/05/29

from a mans point of view (well my point of view) there are only a few reasons why we cheat. firstly, and probably the main reason, is because of a crappy sex life. men are programmed to want it, we need and crave it. so when we have a wife or gf but no sex its very frustrating. we start to resent them and imagine how life would be if we were single and how great the sex could be. doesnt mean we stop loving, but a part of the relationship does die. imagine owning a ferrari but not the keys to drive it? you can look and lust after it as much as you want but you'll never get to drive it. its very unfair. so lack of sex will definitely cause a man to cheat only to satisfy his god given desires. a second reason would be lack of trust in his wife. if he feels she's cheating then he might cheat to get even. however i would say cheating is generally something men deliberate over and seldom a spur of the moment thing. i hope this sheds some light. ps. i dont cheat but have been very tempted due to shyte relationships.

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Posted by: Just wondering | 2008/05/29

Nicola...Much of what you said came out in the sessions with the shrink...He admitted he was selfish, self centred and didnt stop loving me...his thing was sexual only... with someone he didn't really know...he realises too, that his infidelity has caused a lot of unecessary heartache...for both of us...and he gets angry that its because of what HE did that we going thru this now...By the way..we're not married yet...we're engaged...I have access to all his emails..and cell phone. I try not to check cos I want to learn to trust again..Its just soo hard.
I so much want it to work out...cos we were very happy before this incident...In fact I've never been that happy with any other man before...that's why this was such a shocker!

Reply to Just wondering
Posted by: Nicola | 2008/05/29

One last comment: while I was cheating, I never thought about the hurt I caused my husband. I only thought about relieving the pain that I endured within my marriage. Yes, it was utterly selfish, but I was only thinking about myself. After all - what you do not know cannot hurt you, and It was only later that I realised how much pain I have caused him. I promise you - that your husband never cheated with the aim of hurting you. In fact, he never wanted to hurt you purposefully, and he probably thought you would not be hurt, because you were never suppose to find out. You have to accept that as the truth.

Wow - I am so glad that that part of my life is over. I am so ashamed of the person that I was then!

Reply to Nicola
Posted by: Nicola | 2008/05/29

I was once the cheater ... a long time ago, and today I am a changed lady and very sorry about all that had happened. I would like to try and answer some of your questions from my experience.
- I loved my husband very much. We were both very young and I expected marriage to be perfect in every way. It was not and I was disappointed in marriage. Even though I loved him I was unhappy with our marriage, sex was not good, communication not good and he worked too long hours.
- I never planned to cheat on him! The opportunity arised with someone (also married) at work, who first showed interest in me and gave me lots of attention. One thing lead to another and eventually it happened (today I still struggle to understand why I actually gave in to it as it was totally against my values). I never stopped loving my husband and I did not love my lover more than my husband, but we were good friends and could share anything.) Now I know that this was not the way to solve the problem - it only caused more issues and sadness.
- My husband found out and brought me back to reality. He said that he would try to forgive and forget and go on, but he was never able to forgive or to love me as I wanted him to love me right from the start. In the end - we divorced a few years later, not because I cheated, but because of the way he behaved towards me after he found out and because I realised that he will never trust me again. I left him. At that time I still loved him.
- After all we went through, I knew that I would never cheat on him again, and I know today that I will never cheat on my current hubby. So I do not believe the statement that "Once a cheater always a cheater. Cheaters can change if they really want to.
- However, I do not think the victim will ever be able to trust a cheater completely and it should not be expected.
- I believe that a marriage where one person cheated can be saved. But only if:
-both people recognises their share in the marriage problem and be truly willing to fix it, through counselling.
- The cheater must break it off with the third person and never contact the other party again, for any reason. The cheater must also keep out of situations that would make the spouse suspicious e.g. work functions, sleep overs, etc.
- The cheater must understand that the spouse will have self esteem and trust issues, and must accept that the spouse will snoop into things like email, cellphones etc. The cheater must give the spouse free and full access to all such things so that the spouse is not constantly wondering what the cheater may be hiding. This is very important. And surely, if you do not have anything to hide, why not share everything?
- The spouse must truly forgive and even though it is hard, the spouse should treat the cheater as if he/she never cheated. Very often someone cheats because of an unhappy marriage, then the couple wants to work on the marriage so that the cheating can stop, but the spouse is unable to give the cheater what he/she wanted from the marriage in the first place, because of what he/she had done.
Hope this help to answer some of your questions. in the end - it is up to you to decide if you are willing to forgive and to work on your share in the breakup. Good luck. I hope it works out for you.

Reply to Nicola
Posted by: Me | 2008/05/29

If I helped, I'm pleased

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Posted by: Just wondering | 2008/05/29

Thanks a lot ME...I'm glad I posted to get such a response from you. what you wrote inspired me to work harder at making this relationship become even stronger than what it also made me feel that there is light after the darkeness....Afterall....I can either decide to dwell in the past and stay miserable...or bury the past and have postive thoughts about the I used to have.

Thanks again

Reply to Just wondering
Posted by: Me | 2008/05/29

It's always easier said than done. We're all so vulnerable because what happened to you, can happen to any one of us. And many of us are capable of doing it to our partners too, most of us will never admit it though.

Continue with counselling, but also find something to take your mind off this affair. Follow your dream/hobby/passion, it will give you purpose, enjoyment, empowerment and a feeling of achievement which will add to your growth and that of your relationships.

Make sure you don't dwell on the affair, it's not going to help you, or your marriage. Start a diary, when you feel hurt, angry or sad, write it down, instead of repeating the same hurtful things to your husband. He's fully aware of the pain he's caused you. He's probably more hurt than you because he knows that he's the creator of all this pain. I hope you'll heal 100%, and when you get there, you can have a ceremony with your husband, by burying your diary, and having a glass of champage to toast your new life, your second chance together.

Reply to Me
Posted by: Lemon | 2008/05/29

Sheesh - It's so sad that so many of us are in this situation.
I'm also in a dark place right now hoping and praying for the light to shine again.

I'm definitely going for counselling and I hope to high heavens that I can I forgive my husband and move on.

Reply to Lemon
Posted by: Just wondering.. | 2008/05/29

ME : what you say makes a lot of sense. I know this and I agree with it...its just not that easy to DO! I suppose it will just take time... And I have to admit that I do make him feel guilty and treat him with disrespect...I'm gonna work on that...It just makes healing so much slower when I react this way.... and i did forgive him.... Thanks guys for your input..This sharing not only helps me...but also those who find themselves in similar situations.

Reply to Just wondering..
Posted by: Me | 2008/05/29

I'm going to be shot for this but it's my opinion. A cheating man can have sex with a woman and forget about her like you and I forget about the dental floss once we've used it. A cheating man doesn't love his wife any less when he cheats. Some cheat because they're cheaters, others cheat because the opportunity was there, and some cheat because they're unhappy in their marriage. None of this is an excuse, cheating is wrong. Yes I do believe you can recover from this, it will take time and a lot of effort but it's usually worth it.

The time will come when you will have to put it behind you. You can't punish him endlessly, especially not if he's remorseful and is trying so hard. Continue counselling, cry about it, but also work towards putting this episode behind you. Otherwise you'll land up divorced and you'll never know if it's because of the cheating, or because of the way you treated him after his sin.

Good luck.

Reply to Me
Posted by: Just wondering | 2008/05/29

Well, in my case..I chose to stay bcoz it was beneficial in a lot of aspects for both of us…and I do love him, irrespective. But, my next question is…How can a man profess to love you, when he decides to cheat on you? What kind of love is that?
And yes, I also had so many questions…one of them being…what role did I play in this??? And I’m afraid…it was revealed that the expectations from the relationship were not the same from both sides…A lot has been exposed as a result…and I guess we both could learn from this incident. I just wish it never happened…and I just want to put it behind me and get on with my life…but I can’t help thinking about it….How many of you have survived after a betrayal?? He now does everything..and more for me…he’s trying so hard to make amends…I just wish I could love him the same as before…but I don’t..I’m too scared. Will this change in time..?

Reply to Just wondering
Posted by: Sheila | 2008/05/29

Am going to counselling, husband caught in the act but denies being unfaithful, counselling is helping me cope, will never be able to trust him again and he cannot understand why!!

Reply to Sheila
Posted by: Me | 2008/05/29

I often relate her story to a cancer survivor. For the life of me I cannot understand how any person can ever be grateful for having cancer, or being cheated on. All I know is that these people experienced so much pain and because of this pain, they discovered the true meaning of life, or maybe it's an appreciation of our fragile lives, and they're making the best of every day.

Reply to Me
Posted by: Me | 2008/05/29

We are friends with this couple, and the husband cheated on the wife. She was devastated and started divorce proceedings, but went for counselling first. Today she says she's "grateful" for her husband's infidelity because it opened the channels of communication (through counselling), she now understands why he did what he did, and they both corrected those problems. They are truly happy, you can see it a mile away. They go out on dates, weekends away, they started ballroom dancing together, they both claim to be happier now than before the cheating episode.

To answer your question, yes I do believe you can both heal after cheating, and I do believe you can have a better relationship after the event on condition you're both committed and prepared to work hard.

In your opinion, what constitutes cheating?

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