Cheating during a relationship is, unfortunately, a common occurrence in modern society. According to a study published in the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships, it is estimated that anywhere between 30-60 percent of individuals cheat on someone else. Sadly, many relationship experts believe this percentage to be on the conservative side.
“It is better to lock up your heart with a merciless padlock, than to fall in love with someone who doesn’t know what they mean to you.” – Michael Bassey Johnson
The act of cheating in a committed relationship is an act of cowardice; one committed when a person lacks the resolve to take more appropriate actions. Instead of seeking out relationship counseling, engaging in dialogue with their partner, or ending the relationship like an adult; the cheater simply gives themselves to someone else whilst forgetting the hurt – known or unknown – that their infidelity inflicts.
Perhaps worse than the actual act of cheating is the deceptiveness that encompasses the act. Cheaters will often invoke many of the same excuses – even to themselves – in efforts to both hide and justify their behavior. The underlying motive remains the same: an unwillingness or fear of navigating the relationship responsibility.
Leading us to the topic of this article: 7 common excuses of cheaters.
Let’s get to it!
Here are 7 excuses a cheater will try to give you:
1. “I’m unhappy…why should I stay unhappy?”
It is normal for some romance to dissipate the longer a relationship endures. Sex, intimacy and spontaneity are more likely to be lacking in both quality and quantity. Not surprisingly, all three are frequently-cited reasons why someone is unhappy with their significant other.
At its core, this excuse is a defense mechanism. The common rationale for the “unhappy” excuse is to dampen any underlying sense of responsibility or guilt. This self-serving emotional manipulation increases the likelihood that one will engage in an inappropriate relationship.
2. “I’m just bored.”
Similar to feelings of romance, it is natural for novelty to wane during a relationship. Citing boredom as an excuse is simply a manifestation of “out with the old, in with the new.” Using this excuse to cheat on someone is both shallow and disturbing; nothing more than textbook narcissism applied in the context of a relationship.
Boredom is a fair excuse for personal disengagement in the initial stages of dating when two people are attempting to “feel each other out.” After all, sometimes the ever-enigmatic sense of chemistry just isn’t there. In pretty much every other scenario, however, it’s a poor excuse at best.
3.“You’re not the person I met.”
Serious alterations to personality aside, this likely isn’t an excuse rooted in merit. Even then, it should be obvious that more effective means exist to end a relationship. Cheating really accomplishes nothing in this regard; instead, it simply serves as a welcome distraction.
Many times, this excuse is used when someone’s physical appearance changes. Weight gain, lack of grooming, and a perceived lack of self-care are often motivating factors for one to cheat.
4. “We’re always fighting…”
When the complex dynamics that make up a relationship (e.g. sex, finances) are out of balance, frustrations mount and arguments almost always ensue. Of course, the elevated anger that often accompanies arguing has a unique way of suppressing our logic. We’re far less likely to heed the wise axiom “Don’t say now what you’ll regret later.”
Fighting of any sort is an emotionally-draining event. After a certain period of time, incessant arguing can skew one’s perception of someone else…even people they love. Too often, men or women use this is an excuse to cheat.
5. “I can always come back to her/him.”
One way to separate guilt from cheating is to justify it by citing the “benefits” of such; by rationalizing a potential return to the other person. All will be well and good, right? Not really, no. Many people that contemplate this unlikely scenario are guilt-ridden even before committing the act of cheating. You probably see where this is going…
Ironically, some people rationalize the act as a way to come back a better version of themselves; all while engaging in one of the most selfish actions possible.
6. “I’m just ‘designed’ to cheat.”
We’re not here to extrapolate on any genetic predisposition to monogamy or polyamory. Many credible, research-intensive studies have been done on the topic, and one can draw their own conclusions.
However, the notion that any existing genetic influence negates relationship choice – and hence, responsibility – is devoid of substance.
Most of us will agree that some individuals are better suited for long-term relationships than others. The majority of us will also concede that entering into a relationship for which one is not ‘designed’ is a conscious choice. Nonetheless, many-a-cheater have faulted their biological makeup as a reason to cheat. It is not.
7. “I don’t know why I cheat.”
The psychology of infidelity is a foreign topic for most of us. Suffice to say that myriad conscious and subconscious factors are likely at play when someone decides to cheat on their partner.
However, abdicating responsibility for cheating is no different, say, then abdicating responsibility for overeating. While genetic factors almost certainly have a direct influence on each potential behavior, it is within the control of each person make a deliberate choice to engage or not.
One may not know why they have a predilection for cheating, but they should know the reason for such…a conscious choice was made.