5 Ways To Forgive A Guy Who Cheated On His Ex

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5 Ways To Forgive A Guy Who Cheated On His Ex

If the saying is to be believed, “once a cheater, always a cheater.” Dating a guy who cheated on his ex or has a history of infidelity can be off-putting.

No matter how much you like them, or how strong your feelings are, knowing that the person you’re dating is capable of cheating is likely to bring up some doubts about your relationship.

If he cheated on his ex, it’s only logical to wonder if you might be next. 

Sometimes people mess up and make one mistake that costs them their relationship. For others, cheating becomes a regular habit because of some internal flaws.

Either way, doing bad things doesn’t necessarily make you a bad person. Relationships are complicated and sometimes cause us to act in ways that we’re not proud of, but some mistakes are harder to understand than others.

Knowing that your partner has cheated in the past is enough to send some people running. But you might decide that they are worth the risk. If you’re willing to take a leap of faith, this could be the relationship that ends their cheating habits for good.

Here's how to forgive a cheater, and the steps you can take to build trust and accept their past.

RELATED: 22 Ways Couples Can Survive Cheating (And Finally Heal From The Betrayal)

1. Ask for honesty.

If your partner is willing to own up and admit their mistakes, that’s half the battle won already. Someone who is able to admit transgressions that they could have just kept from you is someone who understands the value of transparency.

Of course, it takes time in a relationship to open up, and talking about the darker sides of your past isn’t easy for anyone. But if you have to find out about their cheating from another source, it’s important that they be willing to lay it all out on the table for you.

You might think that ignorance is bliss, but hearing their story will stop your mind from running wild with trust issues and concerns. Ask them questions without judgment. Let them know that you’re not against them, and that you just want to understand. 

2. Learn from the past.

Living without mistakes is impossible, but learning from mistakes is essential.

If you’re dating someone who has cheated in the past, you want to make sure they have changed and grown from their past infidelity. Ask yourself: Do they seem genuinely remorseful, or do they act like it wasn’t a big deal?

Sure, you don’t want the person you date to be pining over a past relationship, but seeing how they treated an ex can be a pretty good indicator of how they might treat you.

Remember that there’s never an excuse to cheat. Don’t let them tell you that the relationship was flawed or that it was their exes fault. If they are able to see that cheating was wrong and that they needed to address issues within, you can be confident that they have changed. 

RELATED: Why Tolerating Your Partner's Cheating Is A Huge Mistake

3. Remember that trust is earned, not given.

It’s not enough for them to just tell you that they’ve changed, they need to show it.

Do they constantly flirt with other people or act secretive? These could be signs that they haven’t learned at all. On the other hand, are you overreacting or being too cynical?

It’s normal to feel a little jealous, especially if you’re worried about their past, but you need to give your partner the benefit of the doubt sometimes.

Take the time to check in with yourself to make sure you feel confident that your relationship can progress. Be open with how you feel and discuss how you can earn each other’s trust. Building trust on a rocky past is challenging, but not impossible.

4. Keep in mind that everyone makes mistakes.

Think of the worst thing in life that you’ve ever done. Is that what you would want people to judge you on forever?

Understanding that your partner wants to move on from their past just as much as you do will help you forgive and forget. Remind yourself that the past is the past and your relationship is different.

If your feelings are so strong that you want to take a chance on them, lean into that. If your relationship is healthy and happy, there’s no need to worry about past relationships.

The last thing you want to do is push someone away by making them feel like they can never set your mind at ease. 

5. Go with your gut.

Our instincts are probably our most powerful tool, but sometimes we forget to listen to them.

Friends who are warning you against it might have your best interests at heart, but choosing to overlook someone’s past is an entirely personal decision. If it feels right to you, it probably is.

There’s no right or wrong answer when it comes to dating a cheater. Only you know how they make you feel, so if your gut is telling you they’re sincere, go for it. But if something is telling you they might not be as changed as they claim to be, there’s no point sitting around and waiting for the inevitable.

Ending a relationship where no trust can be built might be the best thing for both of you. 

RELATED: 3 Easy-ish Ways To Get Over The Devastating Pain Of Being Cheated On

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Alice Kelly is a writer with a passion for lifestyle, entertainment, and trending topics.