I hear a lot from wives and girlfriends who are quite confused. They have recently caught their boyfriends and husbands cheating. And yet, the men are insisting that things can be worked out, that nothing really has to change, and that they still love their wives every bit as much as they always have. The women often ask me how in the world this contradiction can possibly be true. How on earth can someone love and be committed to one woman and yet secretly be with someone else? How can you treat someone you love this way and discount them in this manner?
Often the women asking me this have asked their husbands and boyfriend the very same question. As a response, they are often told that the affair had nothing to do with their feelings for her. They will often insist that the affair meant nothing, was a huge mistake, and will not happen again. These answers and responses just are not sufficient for most of us. We want to know everything. We want to know EXACTLY what they were thinking about both them and us and why they were thinking it.
However, often we’re disappointed. Sometimes, the man is just trying to be evasive because he doesn’t want to hurt us, he’s ashamed, or he has something to hide. Other times, he’s just unable to articulate the inner workings of this whole thing because he doesn’t fully understand it himself. He truly has no idea why he acted in such an embarrassing way and he truly doesn’t have any answers for you except that he’s sorry, that he loves you, and that he’ll make it up to you.
But, men are more likely to share the background and the story behind this situation with women who aren’t their wife. I’ve heard from a lot of them. I can and will share with you what they often tell me about how they can betray you and yet still honestly think they love you, all at once.
Men Often See The Affair Or The Cheating As A Way To Solve A Problem Or To Relieve Some Tension. Sometimes, It Doesn’t Have Anything To Do With Their Feelings For You: I’m not saying that some men don’t cheat because things are difficult or unsatisfying at home. I hear this enough of the time. But, more often, I hear men say that they were very stupid because their wife was loving, loyal, and without blame. Often, something within them changed as they faced some struggle or some doubt.
In this economy, it’s sometimes a loss of a job or a home or even that feeling of security that they’ve got providing for their family covered. It’s surprisingly common that the death of a parent can bring on confusing feelings of restlessness that leave men vulnerable. There are many other examples that would take forever to list. But, some of the more common ones are making new, younger friends or being introduced to new situations or having some stress or doubt invading their lives in some way.
Often these things will cause unexpected and building tension and self doubt. There’s almost an internal crisis happening at the time. Often, they will clam up, isolate themselves, and not seek help or relief. This creates the perfect storm for them to act impulsively when the right person or situation presents itself.
At no time during this process did their feelings for you change. It was their circumstances, their coping mechanisms, and their thought process that changed drastically, but it had much less to do with you than you are probably assuming right now.
If The Cheating Has Happened More Than Once, Use Caution Unless They Can Prove That They Are Rehabilitated: Here’s the thing. I come across many couples who have one incident of infidelity, work together to over come it, move on, and then never have to deal with this as a recurrence. (And these are often the men that I truly believe when they insist they never stopped loving their wife or girlfriend.)
However, there are some couples that deal with this over and over again. When this happens, it can most certainly be harder to believe that he still loves you. Because, he knows exactly how badly the last infidelity shook you and yet here he is still cheating. In these cases, there are sometimes cultural norms or situations that condone cheating. Or, the man is having reoccurring personal issues that he is not addressing or is not solving.
Whatever the reason for this, having him continue to cheat on you and yet insist that he loves you becomes harder and harder to take. The more you allow this, the less likely it is that he will ever be rehabilitated. It’s possible that he does sincerely love you, but in order for you to have a healthy relationship, you’re going to have to demand that this cycle ceases once and for all. If he truly loves you and is committed to the relationship, he should be willing to work with you to end this cycle.
I hope this article has shown you that it’s sometimes entirely possible to love someone and make a mistake. You might be facing a situation where he is sincere but is not expressive enough to help you understand fully. This is where you’ll sometimes have to nudge him along and make very clear what you need from him to start the healing. If he loves you as much as he says, he will typically be willing to struggle along until you get what you need.
I didn’t believe my husband at first when he said he still loved me. But, thankfully, he did not give up and things improved. Although I never would’ve believed this two years ago, my marriage is stronger than ever after my husband’s affair. It took a lot of work, and I had to play the game to win, but it was worth it. Because of all the work I did on myself, my self esteem is at an all time high. I no longer worry my husband will cheat again. You can read a very personal story on my blog at http://surviving-the-affair.com/.