I might as well have cheated on you, as much as you accused me of cheating.
I bust the windows out ya car, and no it didn’t mend my broken heart.
Respectfully I see to thee, I’m aware that you’re cheating, but no one makes me feel like you do.
Out of all the ways we can damage our romantic relationships, cheating is the hard line. And God forbid if you stay! What “kind of person” stays in a relationship with a cheater? Words like ‘weak’, ‘doormat’ and ‘zero self-esteem’ come to mind. I mean …. he or she CHEATED. But, these words aren’t tactile enough to really capture the thoughts, decisions or actions belonging to someone who decides to stay with a cheater.
I think we all know someone who has said ‘I’d NEVERRRRR stay with a cheater’. We’ve heard messages of cheating in music for what seems like forever. We’re told to get our revenge and cheat on them too – see how they like it! Or, to take all of their money and trash their car, home, cut the tongues outta their sneakers – ‘hit ‘em up style!’
It’s very rare that we hear about the heart-wrenching thought process that comes with staying in a relationship with someone who has cheated. Beyoncé’s “Lemonade” album was heaven-sent and she and Jay-Z were commended for being so open and honest about their relationship and marriage. Yet, other celebrities publicly addressing their cheating allegations like Cardi B and Khloe Kardashian were met with ridicule and derision. ‘She’s so pretty and smart and rich – why the hell would she stay with a loser like that?!’ Even when celebrities issue a public apology, for instance, Kevin Hart, and discuss how they are making things right, they are still dragged!
The icing on top of the cake is that these cheating issues are always put on the woman, regardless of who cheated in the relationship. What makes matters worse is that even when they actually do what the songs and movies tell us to – we’re still mad! Cassie was publicly ridiculed about ‘wasting her best years’ with Diddy when she was the STRONG woman who walked away from one of the richest men in the game. (Yeah, it’s low-key hilarious to look at cheating scandals breaking the internet and scroll through the receipts on Instagram while eating a bag of popcorn).
One of the most difficult things about cheating is that the cheaters we meet don’t come in the obvious form of a rapper, basketball player or comedian with the world at their fingertips. In the movies, we can see a player from miles away. Sadly, cheating in real life can occur in many nuance circumstances – some partners are blindsided, some ignore the signs and others are so used to being treated like dirt that their partners can continuously cheat publicly and they still take them back.Cheating in real life can occur in many nuance circumstances – some partners are blindsided, some ignore the signs. Click To Tweet
[box] Do you know someone who’s cheating? Maybe this post might be relevant to you – Your Friend Is Cheating Should You Tell? [/box]
But, how do you deal with cheating or making the decision to stay or go? It’s not that easy but there are a few guidelines below to help.
1. Is the relationship worth saving?
You have to look yourself in the mirror and ask yourself this question. You’ll probably have spent a couple of days dealing with the immediate fallout. Take some time away from your partner and really think about the entirety of your relationship – you probably already have the answer.
2. What are your standards?
Only you know what you are willing and not willing to accept in your relationship. What was your opinion of cheating before you entered into the relationship? Don’t kid yourself into pretending it’s okay that your partner kissed someone else but didn’t sleep with them, so it’s not ‘really’ cheating. What can or can’t you live with? You can’t keep punishing someone if you decide to continue the relationship but lie about forgiving their actions.What was your opinion of cheating before you entered into the relationship? Don’t kid yourself into pretending it’s okay that your partner kissed someone else but didn’t sleep with them, so it’s not ‘really’ cheating. Click To Tweet
3. “Look did you give it to her raw? You love her or nah?”
Do you know what actually happened? A lot of people make decisions just based off what their partner tells them at face-value – ‘I cheated’. If you make your decision just based on this fact alone, you’ll be in for a rough ride when surprises pop up down the line. ‘You said it was just twice – now you’re saying it was more like a couple of months?’
To avoid all of this, ask your partner these questions: Who did you cheat with? How many men/women did you cheat with? Was it physical or emotional? Are you in love with them? Do you have feelings for them? Do you still want this person to be a part of our everyday lives? Why did you cheat? How did you decide to tell me or keep it a secret?
Now, this part is excruciatingly painful, to hear from someone that you are in love essentially tell you that they had a choice between you and another woman, and they went with the other woman because of X, Y, and Z. But, this can help you to understand exactly why the cheating happened, and there may be some soul-searching on your own part in the relationship—which is what you will need in order to build back trust should you choose to stay.
4. “Pffffft, she stayed with the guy?!”
Telling your family and friends – if they are aware of the situation—that you have decided to stay (or go) KNOWING there was infidelity in your relationship is hard. It can be embarrassing to tell loved ones that you’re sticking with it because ‘a strong woman would leave’. Find strength in the fact that you made the right decision for YOU.
Not all men—or women—who cheat are trash. If your partner doesn’t treat you well and is not genuinely remorseful, then you know what decisions you need to make. Relationships are complicated and so is cheating. Was it is a good person making a bad choice or a lost person likely to keep making a string of bad choices? The truly empowered decision to make—in any situation—is not the “should” but the one that actually feels right.Not all men—or women—who cheat are trash. If your partner doesn’t treat you well and is not genuinely remorseful, then you know what decisions you need to make. Click To Tweet
Tell me in the comments, would you stay…or bounce!?