Everything You've Always Wanted to Know About Cheating

Published Date 2/4/2015
Under: Love, Relationships & Family



What makes people cheat?

Frankly, cheating is a tough topic for psychic readings.  First, the accusation of cheating is a very serious charge and I wouldn’t want to condemn a person based solely on the Tarot cards.  Secondly, if you need to call a psychic to find out whether he’s cheating, your relationship is already in trouble! If you have to ask a third party, “Is she cheating?” it’s obvious that you’ve lost the honest communication and trust necessary for a healthy relationship.  So, whether or not the cards reveal he/she is cheating, you need to either get on the phone together and call me or, preferably, see a marriage therapist in person to address the underlying issues.

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Why do people cheat?
 
In rare cases we have “serial cheaters,” a minority of people who feel a sense of entitlement, enjoy the thrill, and will cheat any time they think they can get away with it.  Statistically, these most often are male, and there may even be genetic reasons for it, i.e. having multiple partners was a more successful breeding strategy for males in pre-civilized times, which is not to say it’s an acceptable excuse!  In most other cases, cheating doesn’t happen out of the blue.  Usually the relationship already has problems. 

 
It's been suggested by at least one famous televangelist that, given men’s natural tendency to wander, it is the wife’s responsibility to prevent her husband from cheating, and that she can expect him to cheat if she fails to maintain her appearance and positive attitude and/or doesn’t fulfil his sexual needs.  I reject this “blame the victim” approach because women too often blame themselves anyway.  They call me and say things like, “If only I were more attractive,” or “If I had lost those 10 extra pounds,” or “Maybe if I’d been nicer to him,” etc., he wouldn’t have cheated.  But, you did not make him cheat! 


The cheater is responsible for his or her own behavior. 

There are a number of reasons that ordinary people (i.e., non-serial cheaters) stray.  By the time cheating occurs, the relationship has already been weakened because one or both partners suffer from low self-esteem, “midlife crisis,” hormonal change, depression or other factors.  Not feeling fulfilled in the relationship, they seek validation from another person who makes them feel attractive, witty, special, exciting and desirable.  Unfortunately, this approach is doomed to failure because if we don’t feel good about ourselves, nobody else will be able to fulfil us, either.  So the ego boost obtained from cheating is only temporary.


So what constitutes “cheating”?
Some people limit the definition of cheating to physically having sex with another person.  This definition, of course, assumes that you’re already in a committed monogamous relationship.  If you’re merely dating or in an “open” marriage where everything is being discussed honestly, then it’s not “cheating” per se.  A fundamental component of cheating is lying, which is what makes it so hurtful, resulting in long-term trust issues.  Some people include “emotional affairs” (which women are more likely to be involved in) under the definition of “cheating.”  Although no actual sex is involved, the partner feels emotionally betrayed because she turned to somebody else for solace, comfort, flattery and encouragement.  This is a gray area because everybody needs friends, but the line can too easily be crossed into romance. 


Mere “talking,” however – whether on the phone, in person, or on the internet – does not constitute “cheating” unless it is specifically sex talk.  People have friends.  If your partner does not allow you even to innocently speak with anyone else, this is a danger sign of a controlling or even abusive relationship.  Likewise, mere “flirting” is not “cheating” as such.  Most often, flirting just means he or she is seeking an ego-boost, the validation of knowing that other people find him or her attractive, and/or to make you jealous.  If there was an affair going on, they would not be openly flirting in front of you!


Having said that, spending an excessive amount of time talking with a certain friend, or persistently heavily flirting with one person, can be a red flag of romantic interest that could lead to cheating. And this brings us to the next article: What Are the Signs of Cheating?


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