If you’ve ever had someone cheat on you, then you know the sickening pain, anger, and humiliation that it can cause.
Betrayal is one of the worst things a human can experience, whether that be in romantic relationship, business, friendship, or politics.
And yet, as humans, we are very much wired to be sneaky, and the cheater usually has a long list of important facts that justify their actions. In fact, from their perspective, very often, they don’t even think it was cheating to begin with!
What causes infidelity?
I’ll begin by saying, it’s a very complex issue and there is rarely only a single cause. And while I’m going to talk about a particular dynamic that I think encourages cheating (and it’s justification in the mind of the cheater), I want to be clear: It’s more complicated than this blog post.
The number one cause of sexual infidelity is sexual dissatisfaction. People want more of something, sexually, and eventually they begin to feel like they are “missing out” on something important, and they find it elsewhere.
Based on this, you can “cheat-proof” your partner simply by ensuring that you are sexually satisfying them on every level (and this is far more than just the ability to give them orgasms).
Shameless plug for my programs goes here: Seriously, get Revolutionary Sex if you’re not confident about this.
But not everyone who is sexually dissatisfied cheats. There is another factor that lies at the root cause of most cases of infidelity, and it’s something that the betrayed partner is doing:
One of the complex issues here is that if you are afraid that your partner might be cheating, maybe that’s because they really are cheating, or thinking about cheating. Maybe you are entirely justified in your suspicions.
Or… As I’m about to explain, maybe your suspicions are causing them to become the type of person who cheats… on YOU.
Now I know I’m going to get an avalanche of angry emails:
Cheaters have no integrity!
They are the ones who are lying!
You are blaming the victim!
It’s the fault of the one who broke their word!
And I’ll gently suggest that while that is certainly true, it is also true that you have lied and broken your word on numerous occasions, and many times directly to the face of someone you love.
How do I know?
Because, other than the google-bot that spiders the internet reading everything, chances are, if you are reading this, you are a human. And humans lie, break their word, and are not capable of perfect integrity all the time.
Your lover is also a human. Humans are flawed and have emotions, and like all humans they can go through phases in their life where they are completely dependable, and phases that they look back on think, “wow, I can’t believe I behaved that way.”
And jealousy and suspicion could be a very strong factor in leading your lover to do something that they later regret.
The very first time you are a little jealous, and you say something to your lover, you are punishing them for something they didn’t think was wrong or bad.
It could be very subtle: You notice her giggling and playing with her hair when she’s talking to the handsome bartender… You notice him checking out that woman’s breasts at the party… you feel a little zing of fear and you make little comment.
And that little comment feels yucky. There’s some emotional unpleasantness linked to my enjoying looking at those breasts. There’s a little emotional hurtfulness linked to your laughing at the bartender’s jokes.
Quickly forgotten and no big deal, but…
The next time your man sees those breasts, he’s going to try to hide it from you in order to avoid that negative emotion. He knows you don’t like it. He thinks you can’t handle it. The next time your woman is having innocent fun with a handsome man at the bar, she’s going to stop and pretend she wasn’t having fun when you walk into the room. She’s going to pretend she isn’t interested in that joke if you are around, because you can’t handle it.
Now you walk into the room and, you’re not sure, but it FEELS LIKE your lover is trying to hide something from you (they are), and so you are a bit suspicious. “What are you hiding?”
They say “nothing!” because from their perspective it really was basically nothing, AND because you just proved to them that it was a good idea to hide it from you, you’re obviously being jealous and suspicious for no reason!
If this happens a few more times (and it will), eventually you will catch them in the act. They say, “nothing!” and you say, “but I just saw you!” And now, from YOUR perspective, you have just caught them in a lie. Fight ensues.
They still feel like they are only protecting you and themselves from an emotionally negative experience over nothing.
You feel like they are being less than perfectly honest with you.
And now you are even more vigilant.
“Did that guy try to get your phone number? No? How can I be sure when I caught you in that lie just last week!”
Now your lover has even more reason to hide things from you, and now you have even more powerful feelings that something is being hidden from you.
Your lover no longer feels they are safe to express the full range of their sexual emotions and desires with you because you might judge them or become even more suspicious. They feel trapped and lonely and desperate.
“I haven’t done anything wrong, but you disapprove of me. I feel like I can’t be myself when you are in the room.”
Put a human in chains and they will have an insatiable drive towards freedom.
Eventually they may discover that the only way to feel that freedom is with someone else.
The sneaky difficulty of this cycle is that it can start with the smallest, tiniest, long-forgotten little moment when you were feeling a bit insecure and made some little jealous remark. It can start because, seriously, your completely un-trustable husband/wife was in fact trying to sneak off with that person in their office and you noticed… or it can just as easily start when you saw them talking to an old friend and misunderstood something that didn’t even happen.
All of us have occasional moments of attraction or mini-flirtations with people other than our lover. That’s what it is to be a human. All of us have occasional moments of insecurity.
The trick is to recognize, afterwards, that insecurity and projection are not your lover’s responsibility, but your own. If you said something, apologize.
They’ll say, “oh, silly, that was no big deal!” But they’ll also feel, deep in their bones, “I get to be free and I get to be me when you are around.”
And that is a very good feeling.
Remember that it’s okay for both you, and your lover, to be human.