Cheating - Why it's actually healthy to tell your partner about your desires. And alternatives to cheating.
Why do people cheat in the first place?
There are many reasons but here is what I think are the most common reasons:
1. A poor and unsatifying sex life.
2. Low self-esteem.
3. Lack of interest or commitment to the relationship.
4. Developing a new interest or love for another person.
5. Feelings of anger, resentment, or revenge.
I bet all of us can come up with alternatives to these problems other than cheating. After all, cheating is not a solution it is a problematic symptom of another problem itself. I think it's safe to say that we can all agree that cheating is wrong and unhelpful to a relationship. Then why do we do it? Why do we feel the need to cheat even if we are in a loving and healthy relationship?
We cheat out of weakness and we feel the need to cheat because it is a natural feeling we have when when we experience problems in our relationships, such as the ones I listed above. If we are going to stop hurting each other and ruining our relationships even more we need to take on the mind set that cheating IS NOT AN OPTION. Once we can make decisions under this mind set we can keep ourselves in a position to not create more hurt, more problems, and a bigger mess. You will be doing your parnter and yourself a favor by not cheating.
With that being said what can we define as cheating? The answer to this will vary in every single relationship and should be discussed between you and your partner. What do you both define as cheating? Do you have varying views? Can you both agree on what is appropriate behavior with another person? Taking time to answer these questions with your significant other will create a strong foundation to base your relationship upon. For me as a general rule I don't do anything that I wouldn't want my partner to do. This can be applied in many aspects. If you wouldn't want your partner staring and making googly eyes at a hot person then you shouldn't do that either. This rule eliminates double standards and facilitates appropriate behavior for you and your partner.
So what are we supposed to do when we are in the situation of deciding to cheat or not to cheat or when we have those overwhelming feelings of cheating? The answer is going to vary for your personal situation but look overthese suggestions and see if they are of any help.
In my current relationship we reached a point where sex didn't happen that often and even displays of affection were beginning to fade away. I thought about cheating many times during that phase. It is a natural feeling. There should be no shame to feel this way. We are humans and we desire to feel loved and wanted and when we don't get that from our significant other we look for it in someone else. I had to remember that cheating was not an option though. I was (and currently still am) in a relationship where we are very open and we talk about anything good or bad. Instead of cheating and making our relationship worse I knew it was better to tell my partner about these feelings. For most people that is a scary and hard thing to do. Sometimes we just dont know how the other person will react or if it will make things worse, but think of it this way; if you keep these feelings to yourself nothing will get better and if you cheat nothing will get better. So what option do you have at this point but to discuss these felings or end the relationship all together? If you don't want things to end then you need to tell your partner your thoughts and feelings about cheating. You need to discuss ways to change the relationship to where each of you can get what you need. If this doesn't happen you will either be broken up by cheating or from personal needs not being met. In my case my partner was willing to change their behavior to help meet my needs sexually. It was a compromise on both ends; I demamded less sex and they offered more. We met in the middle and I haven't thought about cheating ever since.
I advise all of you to talk it out with your partner first. Give them the fair chance to change. Their willingness to change will determine whether or not the relationship will work out. I'd like to add that any demands made in a relationship must be fair and two sided. Its hard to say what guidlines should be used when you are asking something of your partner. As cliché as this sounds try putting yourself in their shoes. If they where demanding something from you like you are demanding from them would you be willing to change? You need to be the person that you want to have as a partner.
So I've talked about reason #1 of why peoplecheat, but what about the other reasons? Low self esteem, new love interests, revenge or resentment, lack of interest or commit? Well if youre facing any of these problems I can guarantee you that 98% of you are probably in the wrong relationship. I'm leaving hope for the 2% because dealing with these problems takes a lot of hard work, sacrifices, forgiveness and true dedication that many of us just dont understand or have anymore in relationships, but there are exceptions and couples who beat the odds. All of these problems will take a lot of time and love to overcome. Some of you may benefit from couples therapy in these situations. Couples therapy shouldn't be looked down upon. You shouldn't ever think that just because you are seeking help from an outside source that you don't know how to handle your own relationship. A professional and unbiased therapist can do wonders to help save a relationship. They can suggest exercises to help build the relationship again and they can help foster better communication between the two of you. We all know how misunderstandings can happen when both people in the argument are emotional.
With all the alternatives we have when we face cheating there should be no reason for any of us to see it as a good idea or a solution. Cheating is not healthy for a relationship nor is it healthy for you as an individual. It can greatly affect your future relationships as well. Do I even need to mention how dangerous cheating can be as well? There are risks of diseases and unwanted pregnacies. I guarantee you don't want to deal with the mess of raising a child with someone other than your partner as a result of cheating. That will create more problems as is. (I am not saying that children who result from cheating don't deserve love and are not wanted).
I encourage all of you to stay faithful and dedicated to the relationships you value the most and to have the strenght to leave the relationships that you can not fix and that don't benefit you. If someone isn't contributing to your life they're taking away from it. Everyone deserves a relationship where they have not been cheated on. Cheating creates a permanent tear in the relationship's trust and things will never be the same. That's not to say that things can't be great again but they will never be as they once were. So when you are facing the great issue of cheating tell yourself it's not an option and think of an alternative.