It may hurt to hear this.
There is never a good reason to cheat but if there was, what would you consider to be a "good reason?" Everyone makes mistakes; no one holds the perfect card. However, can all acts of unfaithfulness be deemed just "an accidental mistake"?
I'm not by any means condoning cheating; I am, however, arguing against the phrase, "once a cheater, always a cheater," — and I feel I have just cause to do so.
I cheated on someone. I'm not proud to admit it, but you know what? I don't believe that I was entirely wrong in cheating and I don't think that I will now "forever" be a cheater.
Yes, maybe I was a complete chicken — too afraid to break up with him because I was scared. Still, it doesn't mean what I did was right.
Having cheated on someone doesn't mean I'm a terrible person or that I'm untrustworthy and have "poor qualities." It simply means that from my experience, things were not satisfactory in my relationship any longer. So instead of being an adult, I cheated because I was nervous about ending a four-year relationship with the guy I lived with for two years.
It sounds absolutely awful. Believe me, I knew what I was doing and should've/could've handled things more maturely. But I was a little b*tch.
I'm a firm believer that those who cheat do so because they're not happy in their current relationship: something is missing, you're no longer in love with your partner, etc. But there are also people who cheat because they want to have their cake and eat it, too.
And while I don't agree with or support either of these reasons, I do believe that there can sometimes be a just reason for cheating.
Four years is a long time to be with someone, especially if you live with your partner for two out of the four years. When things in a long-term relationship go south, it's perfectly understandable to be hesitant to pull out of the relationship.
You've already established a level of comfort and that's hard to walk away from. It's not easy to just walk away from sure to the unsure and many couples choose to settle because they're afraid of starting over and being alone. I get it. However, I don't believe in settling and I fully believe there's a difference between loving someone and being in love with someone.
When you are in love with someone, the very thought of being with someone else is non-existent. So many couples claim to be "in love" with their partner but then cheat and it's like, "No you idiot, you're no longer in love because you did that." Yes, you may love them still, but sorry, you can't be in love with someone you cheated on. That's not how it works.
I was no longer in love with my ex when I cheated. I knew I wasn't for quite some time but I was way too scared to leave my comfy relationship that was entirely stagnant — with no future potential.
Because we lived together it made making the move to break up with him all the more difficult. I kept thinking, "I will no longer be waking up to the same person every day," and it freaked me out.
I'll never forget the moment I decided to end it. I opened with the line, "I'm not happy anymore." Cliché but the truth. The influx of emotion was overwhelming and it hit me that I wouldn't be waking up next to him ever again.
My four-year partner, someone who was my best friend, was now no longer in my life. I was scared but he didn't deserve my unfaithfulness, and I didn't deserve to be in a relationship with no future.
As the words came out that ended the relationship, I felt instant relief. Our relationship was over for so long before it ended, there was nothing holding me there anymore.
But I didn't cheat to be an asshole. I cheated because I wasn't happy and I was afraid. Going forward, if I am unhappy in any relationship, I know to end it right away. Because cheating does mean everything to a relationship and ultimately, your relationship will never last if a partner cheats.
Too many couples today settle because they're comfortable and too afraid to be alone and start over. You are the most important person in your life so if you're not happy, only you can change that.
This article was originally published at lorensaidwhat.wordpress.com. Reprinted with permission from the author.