I never really understood why people cheat. I mean, I understand why they want to cheat, but I don't understand why they actually follow through. It never ends well for anyone involved -- whether you're the one being cheated on, the one who's cheating, or the person someone is using to cheat. In the end, usually everybody loses.
There are no good reasons to cheat. And the best option -- not to cheat -- is always on the table. It's not like there's a person pointing a gun to your head and telling you that if you don't cheat on the person you love, you'll die. If that ever happens to you, then it is completely acceptable to cheat.
Other than that, no excuses. Cheating is wrong. Always was wrong and always will be. But you already know that. What you may not know, however, is that there are two basic types of cheaters: people who know that they are doing something wrong and choose to do it anyway and people who don't believe they are doing anything wrong. Even people who generally believe cheating is wrong will come up with ways to justify their actions.
Likewise, the reasons people have for cheating always vary. And because of social norms and expectations, the fact is men are more prone to cheating than women. Not to say that plenty of women don't cheat -- because they most certainly do -- just that men do it more often. In general, men tend to have more sexual partners than women, so it mathematically makes sense that they're cheating more often than women are.
Of course, as our culture evolves and women become more openly sexual (and their sexual openness becomes accepted by everyone else), the imbalance will slowly disappear. But for the purpose of this piece, I'm going to focus on men and their reasons for cheating on their girlfriends.
So why do men cheat on their girlfriends?
1. Because they're scumbags.
While there are good men out there, there are twice as many scumbags. Some guys like to use women. They'll tell women whatever it is they want to hear. They'll make them promises. They'll make them feel special. They'll make them feel like they care. In reality, they just want to keep you around for some regular ass.
The other women they sleep around with vary from week to week. Some weeks are better than others. I know how this sounds, but that's exactly the way that these guys are thinking. It can be difficult to tell a complete scumbag from a regular guy apart -- scumbags are masters of camouflage. They need to be like this so that you don't catch on for as long as possible. The worst part is that while you're crying and heartbroken, they move on with their lives like nothing ever happened.
2. Because they're insecure.
Some guys aren't complete scumbags; they're just incredibly insecure. So it's not that he doesn't care about you. He does. He's just so afraid of losing you -- so afraid that you might even cheat on him -- that he decides to beat you to the punch.
So stupid. But I've seen this sort of thing happen countless times. “I'm too insecure to make this relationship work, so I'm going to go ahead and ruin it. This way, I come out looking like I'm on top. Like I'm not hurting on the inside. Like I'm not lost and confused and ashamed of myself.”
3. Because they don't understand how precious what they have is.
Most people -- maybe even all people -- have a difficult time understanding how good they have it. Although it's not a good excuse, being young and inexperienced does often lead people to cheat. They don't fully understand what it is they've found, thinking that they'll be able to find something just as good -- if not better -- on the other side of the fence.
I feel bad for these guys… Not because someone is screwing them over, but because they're screwing themselves over. I know what it's like to let go of someone that I now would never, ever let go of. It's torture. And I didn't even cheat on her.
So imagine cheating on the woman you love, only to realize that you'll never move on, and you'll never again have her. How could she come back to you after you did what you did to her? Like I said -- I feel bad for these guys.
4. Because they're weak.
Men are incredibly weak. I blame the fact that we have it much easier than women. We get better jobs (and even if they aren't better, they pay better). We don't have to give birth. We don't have to struggle the way women do. And because of this, we never have to learn to fight the way women do.
Men may be physically strong, but they're mentally weak. They have little self-control -- especially when it comes to women. It's as if there is a switch being flipped every time blood circulation shifts to the secondary "head."
I know it's no excuse, but he may have cheated on you because he's weak, not because he doesn't love you. The question you have to ask yourself is: Do you want a weak man as your partner?
5. Because they don't have the balls to admit they've fallen out of love.
Unfortunately, not all love lasts. Some love never becomes strong enough to stand the test of time. And the worst part is that while love can fade for one individual, it can grow for the other. Love is an incredibly psychologically complex phenomenon. It's one that I've done my best to cover in plenty of articles, so I won't go into it here.
Just understand that you can't force someone to love you. You can't ask someone else to love you. And you sure as hell can't beg someone to love you. Loving is a choice. If he is choosing not to love you, you need to accept that and move on.
Of course, it would be nice if he would have told you that instead of cheating on you, but you're probably better off that he did. A sprinkle of hatred can go a long way when it comes to closure.