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10 Common Personality Traits of a Cheater

Updated on December 24, 2016

What causes a man to cheat on the woman he claims to love? Is he just a selfish, self-absorbed jerk? Or, is there "dysfunction" lurking beneath his deceptive ways?

Most research suggests that there is a common set of personality traits that set cheaters apart from their non-philandering counter-parts. The sooner you can recognize these traits, the closer you will be to protecting yourself from their selfish ways.

And now, without further ado, let's begin!

1. Narcissism

Most often cheaters are narcissists, or at the very least they share many similar qualities with them. For example, they are selfish, greedy and often think only of themselves. A narcissist typically feels a sense of entitlement and will do whatever necessary to feed the "narcissistic supply." Wikipedia defines “narcissistic supply” as

“a concept in some psychoanalytic theories, which describes a type of admiration, interpersonal support or sustenance drawn by an individual from his or her environment (especially from careers, codependents and others). The term is typically used in a negative sense, describing a pathological or excessive need for attention or admiration that does not take into account the feelings, opinions or preferences of other people.”

In short, narcissists are self-absorbed, out for number one and lack empathy, which makes it possible for them to have affairs without feeling guilty

2. Deception

A cheater can look you directly in the eyes and tell a lie without even blinking. They have been known to tell tall tales that are so outrageous that you can’t help but believe them. We tend to believe them because they have perfected the lie, which makes it sound utterly convincing. Their lives are so full of deception that the line between truth and fiction is blurred. Not all liars are cheaters, but you can’t be a cheater and not be a liar, the two go hand in hand.

3. Jealousy

What goes around comes around—or at least that's what they think! Cheaters constantly question you and frequently accuse you of inappropriate behavior or being flirtatious. The very fact that they are capable of being unfaithful puts them on the defensive and paranoia sets in. If they are doing it, they assume their partner must be doing it also. They are so deep into their life of lies and deception that insecurity sets in and they begin to accuse you of not only cheating, but lying, flirting, etc. The best piece of advice I can give you is to listen carefully to what your partner is saying and remember this word: Projecting! Projecting, projecting, projecting…got it? If they are accusing you of crazy, uncalled for behaviors chances are they are the one committing the crime. Example: “You were late last night, you’re probably screwing around with your co-worker”. Projecting! They really mean, "I am late sometimes because I’m screwing around." If you have tuned into your cheating spouse's behavior, you can pretty much figure out what they are up to just by listening to what their accusations are.

4. Always Needing More

It’s never enough! A common trait among cheaters is their constant need for more; more money, more attention, more recognition, etc. They are never happy or satisfied. They need constant attention and frequent ego boosts. They are always looking for that next hobby or activity to satisfy their needs, yet they are never happy no matter what they have in their lives. You can give and give but they always need more. They need to be the center of attention, they need to feel needed and wanted always. This is often very evident in the next trait.

5. Flirting

Cheaters are most often, but not always, huge flirts. They need validation from, and to feel desired by, the opposite sex. They often see any flirtatious exchange, no matter how small, as an invitation for more. Ironically, it's not so much that they have huge egos, as it is that they lack self-esteem. Many times they will flirt in front of you as if it's harmless fun. They think that if we see it with our own eyes that we will believe that it will never happen behind our backs. "Yes, he's a huge flirt, but he always flirts with me there so it's harmless." Flirting is disrespectful under any circumstance and should always be a huge red flag—period!

6. Insecurity

The saddest part of a cheater's personality is that they often carry emotional scars from their past. Many unfaithful partners were emotionally abused as children, were ignored; or had love and attention withheld. Sometimes, their own role models were in messed up relationships. They are often emotionally dependent on their spouses or partners. The very thing they desire is the thing that causes them to cheat in the first place. Their fear of being alone is so huge that they need a backup plan; they need to know that someone is always available to them. Often you may feel that your spouse's emotionally dependency on you is so high that they would never risk losing you by having an affair. But the catch here is that their insecurity is so strong that they need to seek out extra-marital affairs to ensure that they never feel alone or insignificant.

7. Thrill seeking

Cheaters are sometimes risk takers in other areas of their lives as well. It all boils down to that “rush” they feel when there is something important at stake. It's often the lies and fear of getting caught that fuels their fire. They just can't seem to resist the thrill of the chase and when the opportunity for reciprocation arrives, they can’t seem to resist that either. It’s a win-win with no regard for the people involved.

8. Immorality

If your partner has confessed to cheating in past relationships, you need to pay close attention. Often, this indicates the extent of their moral code. They have pretty much confirmed that they have no problem crossing the line and will likely do it again. Please don't buy into the excuses they will give for their previous mistakes. It doesn't matter if "she was a bitch" or if "it was already over." Let's call a spade a spade. It's cheating and extremely disrespectful. Unhappy or not, partners deserve a better ending to their relationship than infidelity. So is "once a cheater, always a cheater" true? Often the answer is, unfortunately, yes! (I do recognize that once in a blue moon someone cheats, and it truly was a huge mistake that they can learn from and grow.)

9. Distorted View of Reality

Cheaters often grew up in families where infidelity occurred, or a parent was disrespected in some other way. I'm not saying that it is genetic, just pointing out that if a person grew up in such a disrespectful environment, then this behavior is all they know or have to model their own behavior after. They are more inclined to believe that cheating is a normal, acceptable behavior.

10. Lack of Respect

The way a man treats his mother and carries himself in her presence can tell you a lot about who he is as a person. If a man shows little respect for his mother, he most likely has little respect for women, in general, making him more likely to cross that line into infidelity. On the contrary, if he holds his mother and women in high regard and sees them as valuable creatures deserving respect, he is less likely to cheat.

The Takeaway

These are just some of the most common traits cheaters share. In summary, just be aware of the signs and don't make excuses for poor behavior. Being disrespected by a man is never acceptable, and it is often an indication of bigger problems in a relationship. Cheating, lying, flirting, verbal and emotional abuse are all things that should never be overlooked or tolerated. If you don't stand for something, you will fall for anything. Be strong and demand respect from your partner. You don't have to live that way.

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    • shea duane profile image

      shea duane 5 years ago from new jersey

      cheating in all areas of life is a behavior that begins early in school... it's, in my opinion, sociopathic. i have 'busted' so many kids cheating ... and i just know many of them grow up to cheat on the mates and their taxes... it seems to be how they see the world.

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
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      cheatlierepeat 5 years ago from Canada

      I agree Shea, it is sociopathic. Sad that it is witnessed so early in life and continues into adulthood where the "stakes" of the behaviour are so much higher. Thanks for your input :)

    • leroy64 profile image

      Brian L. Powell 5 years ago from Dallas, Texas (Oak Cliff)

      I have always wondered how women felt about husbands who constantly flirt. That sort of thing is usually explained to me as: He is just being himself. I interpret that phrase as: Back off the subject.

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
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      cheatlierepeat 5 years ago from Canada

      I agree that some women are quick to dismiss their husbands cheating with similar comments. I often wonder if it's a "save-face" tactic or if they really are comfortable that "he is just being himself". I was never a fan of a man flirting with others when he was with me or a fan of someone elses man flirting with me in front of their partner. It's a fine line but either scenario causes an "ick" feeling with me.

    • VeronicaFarkas profile image

      Veronica Roberts 5 years ago from Ohio, USA

      Great hub. You really hit on very valid characteristics, and it gave me chills thinking about some certain people I've come across in my life.

      Do you think that the pattern of cheating can be broken? Do you think that if a man were to find a woman that he absolutely was in love with, and she gave him the attention he so-badly desired, that he'd be content? Or, is it always burning inside; when a pretty woman walks by, or gives him attention (when his ego is boosted), he starts to "fuel the fire", as you stated, regardless of who is at home?

      This topic is very interesting to me, and I will definitely continue to read your hubs.

      This is such a painful thing to go through. I applaud you for wanting to help & educate others!

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
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      cheatlierepeat 5 years ago from Canada

      Hi Veronica,

      Thank so much for taking the time to read and leave your thoughts. I appreciate it.

      To answer some of your questions: I personally don't believe that the pattern of cheating can be broken except in maybe very few incidents. I do believe that its possible for someone to make one mistake under certain circumstances (maybe too much to drink or something like that) and they really learn from it, regret it and never do it again. Dont get me wrong, it's not an excuse, they still messed up bad and if it happened to me at this stage I wouldn't forgive even that! I now have zero tolerance.

      On the other side of the coin, I think if a person can cross that line once, then it's a moral code that they are comfortable breaking or bending. If someone shows you who they are, believe them. They have already told you that they believe cheating is acceptable. To be fair, some people do change...but I believe very, very few.

      I think men who have the traits the require them to need attention, praise and to feel important and desirable will always confuse boundaries when a pretty woman looks their way or shows interest. I also think that if women have even the slightest nagging feeling of "is he?" that most likely he is. Deep down we often know that we have a cheater on our hands, we see inappropriate behaviour that we excuse or make lightly of, we just don't want to believe that they person we love would go so far as to cheat on us. Often cheaters really do love their partners, show them love, affection and attention- which is why we think "not possible" Very possible! They do love us to the best of their ability but they are also selfish and will betray us if it suits their "need". Some are so lacking in self-esteem that the feed on the wife's attention but they want even more. It's a very complex issue.

      In your personal message you said people often didn't want to discuss this happening to them because it came with an element of shame. I was like that for many years after but the more I read and researched, the more I realized it had nothing to do with me. I am kind, smart, have always been told I was attractive.... he had it all, he knew he had it all and he tried his best to keep it, despite his cheating. He is broken and he will do it to every woman he gets involved with. He has since had three failed relationship due to his cheating... he will never break that pattern.

    • VeronicaFarkas profile image

      Veronica Roberts 5 years ago from Ohio, USA

      Wow. Good for you for what you said about yourself. =] You definitely sound like a strong woman! And, as the saying goes "you don't know what you have until you've lost it." I'm sure some -those completely morally derailed- still don't comprehend the good that they had, but I do hope that your ex has, or will someday. Even though you say he'll never break the pattern, I hope that he does have some kind of reckoning one day, and learns to deal w/ whatever the reason is behind his behavior.

      I'm getting a bit deep, and don't mean to...

      Anyway, I think you're right; that most people can't or won't change - that the pattern won't be broken. If only we still had the scarlet letters. I agree that once people cross that line (like with drugs, theft, etc.), it's hard to not do so again. As if it becomes a challenge, a thrill, or an addiction. Not to say that people can't hold back, but it is natural to not do so.

      I thank you, again, for writing these Hubs. It's given me much to think about, as I'm sure it has others.

      Veronica

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
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      cheatlierepeat 5 years ago from Canada

      He knows and he suffers. Initially I had all the pain as women tend to feel things right from the gate, while men often take to the partying and life of freedom full tilt, then that gets old and they see that there is a lot of the same ole same ole out there. Jumping from bed to bed I imagine would eventually leave you feeling empty.

      By the time they start hurting & regretting (usually 6 months to a year), we are well on our path to healing. What we did during that time was the work required to fix ourselves and heal ourselves, while they continued to live freely and repeat the same patterns that left them "empty" to begin with. By the time he began begging, the ship was long sailed.

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      CrystalSSingleton 5 years ago

      This hub is great and so true.

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
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      cheatlierepeat 5 years ago from Canada

      Thank you, it was certainly true in my experience.

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      Amanda B 5 years ago

      These are so true! I wish I had read this a year ago. I just found out my bf has been cheating for 10 months, we have been together for a year. Looking back he has a lot of these qualities. I am so devastated but I will move on, he wants a second chance but that's to much to ask, I think it will always be a part of who he is. Is it once a cheater, always a cheater?

    • profile image

      cheater needs help 5 years ago

      These personality traits may be true. But sometimes for some people like me, cheating helps me to love my wife more. It is like rekindling our love as it is exciting. I have been with my partner for 9 years, but everytime i find a woman to have affair with, it makes me love her more. And i even give her more attention. cheating is the best cure or boredness. And tonight I have just made some advances to our neighbor who is single mother of one child and a family friend. I know some people can call me sick ( maybe I am) but she gave me some positive signal. it is the first time i am so close to home, but i cannot stop having wild dream about her. any suggestions on how to deal with her. I know this ones if my partner (wife) find out, it will be a complete disaster. But i cannot let her go like this, she is so nice looking and seem like she wants it!!!

    • gail641 profile image

      Gail Louise Stevenson 5 years ago from Mason City

      Hi, my father cheated on my mother way back in the 50's. He found another woman and left my mother with kids to raise alone. He had a drinking problem, too. He didn't help with child support. I heard that he like to make sarcastic remarks a lot. He was a mean drunk. He moved to Las Vegas with the other woman. I never saw him again. He never wrote or anything. Mom had to support the family then. That must have been a terrible time for mom, but she got through it ok. Great hub.

    • profile image

      Allison 5 years ago

      wowwwwww this couldn't be more accurate !!!!! this unfortunately explains my father to a T. constantly accusing my mother of cheating when she does a simple food-shopping run. he lost half of his family due to choosing money first. his mother passed away and he couldn care less. just eanted to know how much he was going to make off of her house. lies? pfahhh. no comment. I have a five month old baby boy which is his first grandchild and still get called a whore and a bitch everyday of my life... I feel like his name needs to be right on top offs the title..

    • profile image

      Lianne 5 years ago

      This is scarily accurate - my ex was a pro at lying - even now I can never tell. He was also selfish and greedy always demanding but never giving anything back.. he was a massive flirt and drop dead gorgeous - I loved him loads so overlooked all this!

      my ex would always moan about how his family and siblings neglected him and never gave him attention, they didn't like him as much as each other - I would make a fuss of him but it was never enough.

      ....even when I showed him the evidence I had of his bit on the side clear proof of him cheating and asked for an explanation all he could go on about was how he had been neglected...

      But... I spoilt him rotten, I treated him like a king because I loved him and my own parents had had a relationship where they constantly did romantic things for each other - I did the same for him and he took and took but never gave...

      In the end I told him that I would have taken a bullet for him yet it seemed he had been the one holding the gun and he then started saying he would do the same for me, how he would always love me and no one else.... he never showed it and his affair shows he never will.

      He contacts me but straight away goes on about his awful neglected life - i don't feel sorry for him anymore, I felt sorry for myself but now I am healing... I don't think I'll love so deeply again (certainly not bending over backwards again) but if he even showed some true remorse, some sign he is still the boy I fell in love with I would probably take him back (he does''t know that) and the sad thing is I've realised he will never ever think of anyone but himself...

    • profile image

      Ryan 4 years ago

      Don't assume or compartmentalize cheaters into one gender role. Women cheat as well. There are as many loyal men and women out there, as there are cheating men and women.

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
      Author

      cheatlierepeat 4 years ago from Canada

      I agree Ryan, I also have written about women cheating but I mostly write about personal experiences related to my ex husbands cheating. Thanks for commenting.

    • TattooKitty profile image

      TattooKitty 4 years ago from Hawaii

      The personality traits you've listed here are right on the money. While the truth hurts, it's important to stay alert, aware, and rely on intuition in ANY relationship. Great hub, important info!!

    • profile image

      Phyllis Murphy 4 years ago

      I left my husband for this man, I would have left anyway because my husband had a life of his own and I don't have a problem with that and didn't have a problem with it at the time, we were just not compatible. Anywaysanall, I met this guy, and fell head over heels. He did so many horrible things to me I just couldn't tell you or, myself, because that is exactly why I did. I always thought he would realise he was doing wrong. But, guess what, he just went on doing terrible things to me because I let him. I have to live with that, the fact that I allowed him to ruin my life and my credit. God! I sound like a Jerry Springer show.

      I think it was because I was felt vulnerable leaving a relationship and getting into another without a breather. I had an abortion, he organised all of it, from the moment I said I was pregnant to the doctors, the clinic, the flights (not legal where I live) and turning up with the single ticket on the day because he had to 'work'.

    • Levertis Steele profile image

      Levertis Steele 4 years ago from Southern Clime

      You write, "He is broken and he will do it to every woman he gets involved with. He has since had three failed relationship due to his cheating... he will never break that pattern."

      This is a sad truth for most cheaters. I feel sorry for people who date cheaters, marry them, and think that they will have a marriage free of cheating. Someone once said that the best way to get back at a woman who cheats with your husband is to let her have him. When he finishes sending her through the wringer, she will remember you and be ashamed. The same goes for men who take another's spouse.

      "Smart" cheaters are very selfish and look out for themselves. This type would never marry anyone who cheats with them. The trust is not there. This cheater does not want to be stuck in a marriage with a cheater.

      True story: a woman who was cheating with her married minister said to him, "Why do you always preach about whoremongering when you know that it makes me feel guilty?" He responded, "I am obligated to tell the truth."

    • profile image

      sawthelight 4 years ago

      I am currently going through a divorce from a man that has all of those personality characteristics. Whoa! He was always complaining about life, he never had enough, nothing was good enough....etc. Also he moved a lot in his past, never satisfied with staying in one place for long. I have never felt so much passion and intense emotion from a man. He easily had me hooked. But also he isolated me from all of my friends and tried a lot to isolate me from my family. He would say they don't have my best interests in mind, that I only needed him to be happy. Now I know he was just so insecure he didn't want to share me or my time with anyone, because he never trusted me from the start. I was with him for 8 years, I had all the warning signs to not marry him but it didn't matter to me at the time. I was only 24 when I met him and married by 26. The other interesting thing to note was that he did not like other people's children and always complained about other peoples animals and children as a nuisance. He is very good looking and very obsessed about staying fit, etc. He has told me before that is all he has going for himself. VERY insecure inside, yet very prideful and flirtatious with other women. He would hit on a married woman in front of me and the woman's husband! He cheated so many times I can't count...he wasn't smart about it either. He would either tell me right away or I would see it in phone records..etc. His family life was messed up. His father is a repeat cheater and gambler. His mother put up with it and actually enables both the father and my ex in their sick patterns. She actually blamed me for him cheating on me and said I should just "deal" with it because I married him. I finally ended things after he cheated openly with a coworker. His mother embraced her right away and praised openly to everyone how great his new girlfriend is and how much of a bitch I was. He had the nerve to show up at divorce court with his current girlfriend (who he was cheating with)! She is very naïve like I was. He will wreck her up like he did me...At the same time he would compliment me of my looks when he left and at divorce court, saying that I would always be so beautiful to him. SICK, he still would look for me to respond back hoping I would just melt when he said it. His flirtatious comments actually made me sick to my stomach because of all the damage. He knew then that he had no power over me anymore. That is another thing, he desired that power or need to feel desired so much it didn't matter who gave it to him. By the way, the cheating didn't have anything to do with looks..often the woman were trashy, etc. Now that I am away from him I feel normal again and am trying to reestablish healthy relationships with friends and family. I know now that it really was all my fault for accepting the behavior. I don't feel like a victim by any means.

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
      Author

      cheatlierepeat 4 years ago from Canada

      Hi sawthelight,

      I have lots to say in a response to you but I don't have time right now. I didn't want you to think I read it and didn't answer. I will come back shortly to voice my thoughts. :)

    • profile image

      DFWNovelista 3 years ago

      There is such truth in the above. Having married a "cheater" in my twenties, I wish I had the benefit of this reference as all of these "red flags" were present. Hindsight is 20/20, but foresight would have saved me 13 years of pain and emotional abuse that finally ended in divorce. Ignorance can cost you, and if you have never encountered this type of personality, you do not know how to react.

    • profile image

      AprilMei 3 years ago

      "His mother put up with it and actually enables both the father and my ex in their sick patterns. She actually blamed me for him cheating on me... His mother embraced her right away and praised openly to everyone how great his new girlfriend is and how much of a bitch I was...She is very naïve like I was. He will wreck her up like he did me."

      --Sounds very similar to my situation. My ex displays all of these traits. He is very charming, good looking, and can convince you he is a victim and always the "right" one. My ex would talk mess about EVERYONE (best friends, family, co-workers, ex girlfriends, later on me), and validate his wrongful behavior. Very jealous, insecure, low self esteem, but on the surface you would think he was the kindest, gentlest, good hearted mature man.

      We were together for 4 years and lived together for about 3 years. There were red flags from the beginning and when I questioned things he had an answer and turned it around - projecting & gaslighting. Or made it someone else fault...I caught him cheating a year into our relationship told him I was leaving and he cried, said he will change I was naïve believed him. Well near the end of our 4 years he wanted kids/marriage but I felt he was cheating again, and I was right.

      This time he left me for one of the other girls, I read the emails she told him she is way better than me, she wants to F**K him, she can make him "happy" etc. He got a huge ego boost and kicked me out of our home and now a year later is so in love with her and his mom who treated me like a daughter and would call me "baby girl" is now all over the new girl knowing she is the one he cheated with and left me for, but his mom and all his friends are condoning his behavior. My ex behind closed doors treated me like shit, even pushed me 2times out the doorway...but he is justifying his behavior by blaming me. Told me its my fault he cheated, and his mom even told me the same thing indirectly asking if I wore lingerie for him, & that "men don't like to talk about their cheating", etc. Her husband treats her like a second class citizen and my ex was raised disrespecting his mother alongside his dad & brother, even told me he hated his mom and "loved" me more than her.

      But his new girl who worked her way from a sideline homewrecker to current girlfriend told me she is an "upgrade" and he won't cheat on her....I have now healed and can't wait to find a man who can co-create a healthy relationship with unconditional love, and who isn't a cheater. Knowing my ex's true colors, his true moral character, has helped me heal because I know see he has the problem, he is at fault, and that he needs years of therapy before he can change. And that this new girl is apart of his problem by aiding him in the action and telling him she accepts his cheating disrespectful actions. She is not SPECIAL, once their "honeymoon" phase ends he will cheat and or dump her, or she may do it to him since she is capable of betrayal.

      I now see this is a life lesson, I had to go through a rough patch to gain wisdom and figure out why I accepted his behavior and ignored red flags. My ex was my first but I am glad he is not my last. He's a repeat offender, that hurts people and one day he'll face himself for what he truly is. I'm no longer a victim but a survivor who is letting my success & happiness be my ultimate revenge. So if my ex ever comes looking for me he can see I am a better woman without him.

      Thank you for this list!! Wish everyone luck and happiness!

    • profile image

      ThatGuy 3 years ago

      Well, I am a guy who is struggling with my feelings, I know if the opportunity presented itself, I would cheat.

      I love my wife, but married someone who just is not my type physically, she just never has revved my motor. I am not any of the above classic signs of a cheater. I wonder if there is another class of cheater who is off the radar screen? I am not a good liar, and I know if I did anything it would immediately be found out!

      But, here I am, ready to cheat.

    • profile image

      Joe 2 years ago

      What do you how "he" treats his mother? Oh I get it, only men cheat...right.

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
      Author

      cheatlierepeat 2 years ago from Canada

      Hi Joe,

      I don't understand your comment, but women definitely cheat as well. I write mostly about my experiences.

    • profile image

      Erica 2 years ago

      I am a female and i am everything that this article describes i can't stop cheating i feel bad at times but i haven't gotten caught and i keep doing it. This is a rush and i hate myself at times but in a way my sick twisted ways cant let go.

    • profile image

      Olive Newton 23 months ago

      Do you think your boyfriend or husband is cheating on you? Let the country's best female PIs help you get to the bottom of it. We are shooting a new TV pilot for and are looking to help. Please email dana_lillie@discovery.com for further details.

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
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      cheatlierepeat 23 months ago from Canada

      Erica, I feel bad you are struggling with this. I can't imagine the inner struggle, but at least you acknowledge that you do struggle with this and maybe one day you will be able to find ways to better deal with the temptation.

    • profile image

      Foolish7 23 months ago

      My ex and I moved in with each other in feb 2013 I thought things was going great but he lost his job in June of 2013. July he started staying away and staying with his mom every time he would not be home it was family reason.Finally he said its not working out I'm moving in with mom,but he was really moving in with the woman he was messing with behind my back. A woman with a teenage daughter. he blocked me from Facebook,so i would not find out I had to confront him when he came to get his stuff. Now we started talking again last year we realize we still loved each other. Even thought on facebook she has her self listed as engaged he told me it was a fake.He got a car to travel an hour 30 away every day to be with me. I took him back and same month again find out he is cheating once again moving out and has a new girlfriend again this time with three kids.I'm stuck with the bills and the damage he left behind once again.. And slept with another woman while he was with the one he cheated on me. Is this just a repeat cheater or a person that can't deal with any stress in his life?

    • cheatlierepeat profile image
      Author

      cheatlierepeat 23 months ago from Canada

      I'm sorry! Please get as far away from this man as you can, and never look back. He is a serial cheater! . I'm telling you from experience that being involved with this man is going to cause you nothing but heartache. Run!

      No woman (or man) deserves to be treated with such disrespect.

    • Iamthatwife profile image

      Maizie 22 months ago from North Western Canada

      My husband is several of these things but not all of them. He had a sexual affair and at the same time had an online emotional affair with a much younger woman. The sexual affair was just supposed to be friends with benefits sex but his married friend decided she wanted more. He did not want more with her. The 26 year old online affair, she's different. He cares about her, doesn't want to hurt her but his whole relationship with her has been a lie as well. His sexual affair started with her when his friend fell in love and her wants in their relationship changed. In order for our marriage to survive he needs to end his emotional relationship with this girl.

      I wish I knew if I was making the right choice to continue to try and work this out with him. It should be an easy fix. Either he chooses life with me where I'm willing to work though and save our marriage or he isn't. It's very hard to walk away from someone who tells you it's you he really loves, and wants to be with but at the same time he won't disconnect his girlfriend cellphone to prove it. He doesn't want to hurt her because she suffers from anxiety and depression, he worries about her. He's not a mental health professional, he cannot help her. If anything he is making things worse, because it would be just as devastating to her, as it was to me, if she found out he's lied to her for the last three years. My patience is coming to an end, I'm finding it easier to walk away from him and not listen to his reasons for not doing what he told me he would do, why he can't just shut the phone down. I don't care anymore, just shut the phone down and then we can talk about repairing our life. I'm drained and have spent far too long trying to fix something I did not break. I've given him a year to prove he was going to change and it's still going on. I want to believe he's a good person and that he truly does want our marriage to work but there have been so many lies that I'm not sure he even knows what is the truth is anymore.

      Very good article, thank you.

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      cheatlierepeat 21 months ago from Canada

      IamthatWife - Hi, thank you for your comment. I am sorry you are going through this, it really is torture.

      You didn't ask for my advice but I just want to tell you to be very careful, your husbands actions are far from those of someone who will do anything to save their marriage. I know you already know this, trust your intuition... those nagging thoughts you try to silence are right, listen to them.

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      Anthony jones 5 months ago

      Such a biased opinion. Theres no proof in this pudding. What you aren't reading is that ALL humans make mistakes and ALL people have these traits.

      Accusations can come out of fear. Paranoid tendencies come out of insecurity. Everyone practices these emotions.

      What this article sounds like to me is a paranoid woman who has been cheated on nunerously so she picks away at her partners and turns them into categories instead of a person.

      Always dissecting the conversation to find an underlying cause.

      This type of behavior is borderline.

      Bottom line...people are gon a screw up and piss you off. Doesnt mean tjat they are held to the fire for life because of some simple words or actions.

      Come on people!! Just use common sense and better judgement.

      Dont listen to this crap. Shes already crazy lol

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      Mike 4 months ago

      This article perfectly describes my wife

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      cheatlierepeat 4 months ago from Canada

      I am sorry to hear that!

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      Katie 3 months ago

      Thank you for this very helpful article. I am surprised how shallow and superficial cheaters are! Grateful I am disease free and free from the havoc of cheaters!!!

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      Jjj 8 weeks ago

      Why is this aimed at men?! Women cheat too....

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      Kris04 2 weeks ago

      I have been married for 24 years my husband has always had emotional affairs and I always took him back. At this point we are going through a divorce I can say I have lived and learned yet better late than never. So I agree men cheat because they are not secure in their own skin, and needs attention more often than others , they want their cake and eat it too. My situation is wondering why and how can he replace me so fast with someone else and when he is caught he blames me, says he feels alone or the mighty one of " I don't know" yet he says he loves me ..Hello you have a heck of way showing it and talk is cheap. His latest is he was driving a woman home ( he does one of those use your car as a taxi service on the side) ) as he put it she was drunk and they started talking about life and she gave him her phone number, well he called and text her on his sideline account and was going to take her to dinner but he claims because he loves me he could not go through with it, my response when he told me was you did start it when you accepted her phone number with no regard or respect for me and knowing how the past affairs effected me you still went through with calls and text so please spare me your still in love with me. The worst part is I hold hope he will change even though he says he does not want the divorce I have yet to see him stop it or suggest therapy or something. Cheaters have no clue what their stupid mistakes do to others and even when busted there is very little feelings/regard to the spouse/partner. So how does one learn to move on and forward and let that hope go with a cheater that has cheated for over 20 years. Yes kids are involved age 20 and 17 and they are not in their dads life because of the examples he set and he chose years ago to not be active in the kids lives yet wants that title as "dad" how can a father say to his kids he will not do it again and will be and do better but be and do worse ? If you want to have a relationship with the kids then you would think doing anything and going to the end of the earth would come to mind. I am tired of being replaced , hurt, put on the sidelines . So now I stand tall and strong I just wish I could forget him, and stop asking why and not care . Other than that life is good considering my options divorce is best for me. I wasted enough time.

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