Cheating, unfortunately it is very common and often means the end of a relationship. Because ‘once a deceiver, always a deceiver’, right? Not always, say some relationship experts. They explain why people cheat and how your relationship can survive deception.
Why deceives people
First of all, it is important to gain insight into the reasons why people are unfaithful. “Often someone is acting strange because he is missing something in his current relationship, such as emotional intimacy, sezx or confirmation,” says sezx therapist Sari Cooper. “Another reason why people are unfaithful is because the passion is extinguished in their current relationship. In order to experience the feeling of lust again, they start looking for a different relationship.”
“An affair may also indicate a desire for change, because someone does not feel happy in the relationship or in his or her life. Sometimes people also cheat because they want a different kind of sezx than they have with their current partner. They then think that their partner will not want to go into their sexual fantasies, so they go looking for someone else to fulfil them. Emotional neglect can also lead to infidelity. If one of the two works a lot or has very little attention for the others, for example.”
The second chance
If you are dating someone who was unfaithful in the past, do not assume that you will be deceive. “Some people who have deceived their partner are embarrassed and even disgust themselves,” said Cooper. She also says that those people would do well to talk about this with a professional, so that they can search together for ways to prevent their behaviour from repeating itself in the future.
According to relationship expert Terri Orbuch it is also possible that people change. “I am convinced that your behaviour in the past is the best predictor for your behaviour in the future, but I do not believe in the statement “once a deceiver, always a deceiver”. People can learn new patterns or behaviours, they can learn to communicate better with their partners about their expectations and needs and thus prevent them from cheating their partner. It is not because you ever made a mistake that you will make it again in the future.”
Building trust again
If you have recently been deceived, know that your relationship can recover from deception. “Restoring trust is one of the most difficult, but most important tasks for a couple where adultery has happened,” says psychologist Rachel Needle. “Sometimes a relationship can become even stronger after an affair, especially if both partners are then honest with each other and learn to communicate better.” Orbuch agrees. “Trust is difficult to rebuild, but it is possible.” However, she recommends that you turn to a therapist. “Although you may be able to forgive your partner, it is often difficult to forget. A therapist can then work with you to find a way to regain trust in each other.”
Needle also recommends to continue communicating with your partner and to regularly share your needs. “Work on your relationship and make it a priority every day. That means that you have to schedule time for each other as a couple. For example, make a habit of inserting a weekly evening where you use the time to talk and listen. Also try to pay enough attention to physical intimacy. After all, it is important that you also grow together again in that area. For example, introduce something unusual in the bedroom once a month to revive your sexz life.”
Finally, Needle points out that you also need to keep an eye on your own mental health. “Caring for yourself is crucial. Therefore, pay attention to how you feel and listen to your belly. If you are full of anger or suspicion, or if your intuition tells you it does not feel right, you should do your best to evaluate your relationship again and see if it is worth the effort to continue. Do not do that alone either but talk about it with others or consult a therapist.”