Why Do I Date Men Who Are Cheating On Their Girlfriends?

Why Do I Date Men Who Are Cheating On Their Girlfriends?
I have trust issues with men, and it can be very difficult to decipher when my concerns are legitimate or due to my own paranoia. I’m attractive enough to draw a considerable amount of male attention and have enough personality to keep them to develop what I believe to be serious relationships. But months later, I discover I’ve been wrong.

In my last relationship, I spent 3-4 nights a week at his house for months. I had a key to his apartment. I even met members of his family. And yet I STILL found out that he was engaged to another woman! And only because he’d forgotten to tuck away his anniversary card.

Being cheated on is bad enough but worse is consistently feeling you weren’t good enough to be the only girlfriend, nor good enough to be the #1 girlfriend. I tend to give the benefit of the doubt. I don’t spy on phone calls or snoop through drawers, but I’m starting to feel it’s necessary.

And before you say you’re not making yourself available to the right guys, I dated against type. I’ve been wined and dined by alpha jock types, I’ve done the light studio sessions will fellow artists. Hey, I’ve even done the really effeminate straight hair dresser (He had the nerve to ask me to reassure his lady that we had been using protection when we hadn’t.)  And yet I am still the back up girlfriend. HELP!  –Sharon

Oh, Sharon.

Your problem is the simplest one I’ve ever encountered in 4 years of writing this blog.

Of COURSE you have trust issues.

You choose un-trustworthy men!

You have AWFUL taste in men.

You have seemingly NO sense of how a good man acts.

You probably wouldn’t recognize a man of character if he opened your car door.

Of COURSE you have trust issues. You choose un-trustworthy men!

So to properly address how to avoid this unseemly predicament in the future, it doesn’t start with spying on phone calls or snooping through drawers.

It comes with looking for patterns in your past, since you’re the only common denominator in your life and you’ve CHOSEN these men.

I’m no psychologist, but the obvious questions I have for you are these:

  • Are your parents still together? Did your father leave you? Do you have any role models or paradigms of successful relationships in your life?
  • Have you always gone for emotionally unavailable men or did you start after a specific event in your life?
  • How old are you and how long has this been going on? Everyone does stupid things in their 20’s. By your mid-30’s, your decision making should probably have improved.
  • What is the common denominator between the “different” men you’ve chosen? Is it possible that you go for hot, charismatic, and unpredictable men in all forms? Because if you chase exciting, interesting men, it’s little surprise that those same men will a) have that same effect on other women and b) have the ego to keep pursuing all those other women because he values excitement more than stability.

Which, I’m guessing, is not all that different than you, Sharon.

If I had your life experience and sample size, I, too, would come to the conclusion that men are liars and players and not to be trusted.

Instead of thinking you’re breaking your patterns by choosing men with different careers, why don’t you actually start choosing men based on ONE quality alone: integrity.

But if I were me (which, for the sake of today’s post, I am), I’d point out to you that there are over 50 million married men in the United States, and, logically, most of them are not cheating on their wives.

So that just means that you need to work on your picker.

Instead of thinking you’re breaking your patterns by choosing men with different careers, why don’t you actually start choosing men based on ONE quality alone: integrity.

If you make integrity as important as you make attraction, you will quickly discover that you have no impulse whatsoever to break into your boyfriend’s email.

Good luck.

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Comments:

  1. 61
    Karl R

    Lily said: (#64)
    “Those things are working for your father because he believes they will.”

    So if my father thought that beer, pizza and watching TV were healthier than fish, vegetables and excercise, his current diet and exercise would be counterproductive?

    A healthy diet is healthy regardless of a person’s understanding of nutrition. Exercise is healthy even if a person doesn’t recognize the health benefits.

    Lily said: (#64)
    “Whether you like it or not, my argument is more logical than yours.”

    You think these things are healthy only if a person believes in them. That’s your idea of a logical arguement?

    Lily said: (#64)
    “eating in a way that he believes in unhealthy would make him feel bad.”

    My father prefers unhealthy foods and he’s tired of fish. He eats healthy foods because my mother is the cook, and he has to win a fight with her in order to eat one unhealthy meal. He’s not sufficiently confrontational to win enough fights to eat an unhealthy diet.

    And since my mother tracks the family finances to the penny, he can’t even cheat without her knowing.

    Lily said: (#64)
    “Action always comes after thought.”

    You’re assuming that the person taking the action is doing it based upon their own thoughts.

    A manual laborer gets the benefits of exercise even though that’s not his intention. He gets the benefits of exercise even if he hates the job. He gets the benefit of exercise even if he doesn’t realize there’s a benefit (besides the paycheck).

    The laborer exercises because his boss is paying him to do a job. My father eats healthy food because that’s what my mother cooks for him.

    Lily said: (#64)
    “Mood is totally dependent on thought.”

    That’s correct.

    But the benefits of my father’s diet occur regardless of whether he likes the food. The benefits of exercise occur regardless of whether the manual laborer likes his job.

    But whether you enjoy the meal or the exercise, that’s totally dependent upon your thoughts. As long as you are willing to restrict your comments to a person’s own attitude, I’m willing to concede that thought is a dominant factor. If you try to beyond those bounds, thoughts are secondary to actions.

    And in a relationship (the general topic of this thread) the way the other person thinks and feels are essential elements. You can’t influence those with your thoughts. You can only influence those with your actions. And your mood and intent are meaningless if you’re unaware of which actions are more likely to produce the desired result.

    Lily said: (#65)
    “You attract that which you are vibrationally in alignment with, ie what thoughts and feelings about the thought you are offering.”

    Have you ever experienced random violence?

    About 3 years ago, I was walking to my yoga class. My mindset was about what you’d expect … in the moment, looking forward to some exercise and stress relief.

    That changed suddenly when four teenagers decided to assault me (probably as part of a gang initiation). It was broad daylight, next two a busy street, two bystanders were chatting about 20 feet away. There was nothing in my thoughts or actions that provoked the encounter.

    Your thoughts/mood/belief won’t determine other people’s actions. They still have the ability to do what they want, even if that’s completely contrary to what you ought to attract.

  2. 62
    Selena

    Karl #66
    Your thoughts/mood/belief won’t determine other people’s actions. They still have the ability to do what they want, even if that’s completely contrary to what you ougt to attract.”

    Now THAT’S a logical argument. Proven over and over again everyday, everywhere.

  3. 63
    Annie

    @62.

    Low self-esteem isn’t the opposite of narcissism. A Narcissist in laymans terms, is some-one who cannot and will not seperate their emotions from another.

    If some-one falls for a dishonest person one or even 2 times, I’d say sure, they have some lessons to learn. If it happens in every single relationship from the time you are 14, then there’s something going on with you that you need to address first. I would recommend in this case, speaking to some-one about it before trying to date again.

  4. 64
    Annie

    @63 Karl R.

    I wish I knew how you edited your posts that way.Lol!!

    I’m a victim of abuse and of a highly narcissistic Mother. I am quite familiar with this as I’ve had to work through it over many years.

    In terms of an abuser, sometimes they do end up together. If you’ve been abused in your life(as a child) you will either end up as a perpectual victim, or an abuser…or you will get some help…. or get very lucky. Either coping mechanism, is an illegitimate attempt to heal from the same thing. A person who is truly mentally healthy, will not allow themselves to be abused, or to become an abuser. What looks so diffferent on the surface(the abuser seems the opposite of the abused), will have a simliar underlying mental state(low self-esteem being one of them). They are both trying to heal, but using a different mechanism to do so. You will often find an abuser, will end up their next relationship, as a victim. Not alway’s but it happens quite a bit.

    As to narcissism, you gave a link to a narcissistic personality disorder. Not all narcissists will become like this. In fact, all human beings are narcissistic. We are born that way, and there are degree’s of it and it exhibits itself in different way’s.

    I hope I’m not invoking Godwins law here, but the reason some-one like a Hitler could do what he did, was because he was playing on the narcissism of the people.

    As an example of a very common narcissistic behaviour,  is some-one that gets’ hostile, when you disagree with them.

  5. 65
    Harriet Bond

    This is another example of just how damaging low self-esteem can be for women; it just means they end up being treated terribly over and over again! It is true that at some point you have to ask yourself the difficult questions like ‘Why am I choosing these men?’ Exploring these questions may be difficult and painful, but if you don’t you will never move on and have better relationships!

  6. 66
    Lily

    @ Karl R #64

    Just because your father would prefer unhealthy food (for whatever reason), he still believes it is bad for him. And yes if your father believes eating pizza, drinking beer and watching tv were healthy, that would be the case for him. I’m not going to address every point you made, because I can’t be bothered :P

    But the random attack of violence. You call it random but by now you must realise I do not think anything is random? I’m sorry that happened to you, but you do mention you were thinking of your yoga class as stress relief…which means you were stressed? It is sometimes a horrible thing to hear that people create their own reality by thought, especially when undesired things happen, but it is what I believe. The universe is an absolutely justified place.

    Also, you speak about intent. Most people do not choose thought intentionally, they react to their reality, and when more things show up that are identical to their reality, their beliefs become ‘right’. Maybe if we tried imagining a little more and acting a little less?

  7. 67
    Ruby

    @68  “Low self-esteem isn’t the opposite of narcissism. A Narcissist in laymans terms, is some-one who cannot and will not seperate their emotions from another.”

    I’m not sure where you are getting your definitions or even what they really mean. That’s not the definition of narcissism in the dictionary. 

    In any case, I guess I’m just not on board with The Law of Attraction theory!

  8. 68
    Karl R

    Annie said: (#69)
    “I’m a victim of abuse [...] If you’ve been abused in your life (as a child)”

    So you were an inherently abusive child and therefore attracted an abusive parent? Or did your abusive parent attract an inherently abusive child?

    I don’t think you believe either of those things. (I certainly don’t.) Living in an abusive relationship creates the abuser/victim cycle that you describe. That’s cause and effect at work, not some law of attraction.

    You didn’t attract an abusive parent because of anything you thought or were or did. The abusive parent creates the next step in the cycle. The child grows up in that kind of relationship, and tries to emulate it in his/her future relationships (unless there’s active steps taken to break the cycle), because that relationship seems normal.

    So when the grown-up abused child tries to form a relationship (emulating what they grew up with) as either the abuser or victim, they’ll end up driving off someone who is emotionally healthy. Which relationships end up sticking? The partners who also expect an abuser/victim relationship … ones who grew up in similar families.

    If you can’t maintain a happy relationship with someone who is unlike you, then you’ll end up with someone who is like you. Again, that’s cause and effect, not some mysterious law of attraction.

    Annie said: (#59)
    “Narcisist will alway’s attract narcissists.”
    Annie said: (#69)
    “In fact, all human beings are narcissistic.”

    In other words, a narcissist will attract another narcissist, because there’s nobody else to attract.

    That hardly proves your point.

    Lily said: (#71)
    “And yes if your father believes eating pizza, drinking beer and watching tv were healthy, that would be the case for him.”
    Lily said: (#71)
    “It is sometimes a horrible thing to hear that people create their own reality by thought, especially when undesired things happen, but it is what I believe.”

    Then why haven’t you created a reality where you can convince me that you’re right?

    For that matter, why doesn’t reality conform to the beliefs of delusional people. If a man believes that he is Jesus Christ, he gets locked in an institution instead of attracting disciples. Shouldn’t his conviction create a reality where his belief is true?

    Lily said: (#71)
    “I’m sorry that happened to you, but you do mention you were thinking of your yoga class as stress relief…which means you were stressed?”

    Then why don’t I get assaulted on all the other days when I’m more stressed? It couldn’t have been that stressful of a day. I left work with enough time to make it to yoga.

    Lily said: (#71)
    “Most people do not choose thought intentionally, they react to their reality, and when more things show up that are identical to their reality, their beliefs become ‘right’.”

    That sounds like a fairly good description of what you’re doing.

    I’m more impressed with how you’re willing to ignore anything that contradicts your view of reality.

  9. 69
    Selena

    I’m impressed at how dogged some people have become regarding their version of how reality works. The millions of people who were negatively affected by Hitler brought it on themselves because of their narcissism? Bullshit. This thread is becoming more ludicrous the longer it goes on.

    Keep in mind these men who cheated on Sharon were also cheating on another woman as well. To keep two or more romantic relationships going requires a strong ability to compartmentalize. And possibly alot of previous practice.  Hard to determine this *trait* when one is first dating; in fact it might not show up until years into the relationship. She can work on her “picker” but only she can identify the traits these cheating guys had in common – if any.

  10. 70
    Lily

    @ Karl R #73

    A man who believes he is Jesus Christ would end up in a mental institution because most likely he has had a strange childhood or life. Even though this man is hypothetical I am going to assume he is not coming from a place spirituality. Also who are you to say he would not have gained a following?

    The time you got assaulted, you may have set that into motion a long time ago…time is only a man made function.

    And you are right, if I were to follow what I’m saying here I wouldn’t even want to argue. I haven’t convinced you I am right because my own vibration / thoughts/ feelings are getting screwy in arguing. Although we have different beliefs, we are in a vibration of resistance when arguing and therefore neither of us will get thru to the other. And on that point, no further comments from me :D

    Maybe we’ll speak on another thread Karl ;)

  11. 71
    Karl R

    Lily said: (#75)
    “Even though this man is hypothetical I am going to assume he is not coming from a place spirituality. Also who are you to say he would not have gained a following?”

    Why would I use a hypothetical example when I can use a real one? I embedded the following link in my previous post, but you appear to have overlooked it.
    http://www.slate.com/id/2255105

    Or if you prefer a more in-depth look at my non-hypothetical example, go to the library and check out “The Three Christs of Ypsilanti” by Milton Rokeach.

    Lily said: (#75)
    “The time you got assaulted, you may have set that into motion a long time ago”

    Let’s see. Four teenagers (whom I’d never met) decided to walk through my neighborhood (where they didn’t live) and commit multiple criminal acts upon multiple people (most of whom didn’t know each other) because my/our thoughts set up a vibration?

    It seems a bit more likely that four teenagers decided to walk through my neigborhood (where no witnesses would recognize them) and perform various criminal acts (possibly as part of a gang initiation) upon targets of opportunity that happened to cross their path.

    Of course, their actions led to a fair amount of unpleasant reactions.

    Lily said: (#75)
    “I haven’t convinced you I am right because my own vibration/thoughts/feelings are getting screwy in arguing.”

    Or maybe I’m resistant to your persuasion because you’re wrong.

    I haven’t even been trying to persuade you. I’ve just been giving you the opportunity to persuade everyone else that your beliefs are illogical.

    If my thoughts could affect you, I could have accomplished this by sitting here and vibrating. But I was able to accomplish the same thing by acting (typing responses into my computer) in such a way that it influenced your reactions.

    It’s one of those byproducts of me choosing my thoughts (and actions/reactions) intentionally.

    But if you want another way to demonstrate your ability to create reality by your thoughts/feelings/vibrations, make yourself grow young and pretty and remain that way for all eternity.

  12. 73
    Annie

    @73 Karl.

    As indicated, I am talking about the realtionships you choose to engage in.

    Obviously as a child, I did not choose my parents. My parents however, did choose each other. And they both suffer from low self-esteem and have a fairly high degree of narcissism. As such, they created 3 narcissistic children, with low self-esteem. My oldest sisters partner, is as narcissistic as she is. My middle sister and I worked on our issues, and as such have much healther friendships and relationships now. Prior to me working on my issues, I continually dated narcissistic and manipulative men, and had narcissistic and manipulative friends. That’s because I was manipulative and narcissistic.

    I am not talking about mere attraction here, but who you ultimately choose to be in relationships with. You will end up choosing people, who do not have a lot of differentiation between their mental state and yours.

    For example, since you Karl, display a distinct lack of narcissistic tendancies(only going on what you say here obviously), I can make a fairly certain judgment call, that  your partner is the same. I don’t even need to meet her.

    This isn’t some weird force, or voodoo, or interplanatary alignment types concepts. It is just the way human relationships are, which is why if you often end up choosing the same kind of people, you may need to look at yourself first. Sounds harsh, but it is the only way to fix things in the long term.

  13. 74
    Lily

    @Karl R #76

    Make myself grow young and pretty? I’m 19 ;)

  14. 75
    Catherine

    “Which brings me back to the original question… how do identify the wrong ones? I like the trust the bad feeling ignore the good. I like the don’t trust a man the guards his phone. Any other creep detection tips?”
     
    Hello Sharon, I’ve been with a guy who had a double life…. I went out with a guy for two years who it turned out had another gf he’d been with on and off for seven years (and he lived with both of us for a couple of months, while supposedly living with his brother!). Neither of us knew, but in retrospect all the signs were there. I found out at a later date when she knocked on my door.
    He had some things that helped him do this, he lived in different city for part of the relationship, I met some of his friends before he’d split with her, and  I think they knew he’d lied when they asked me when we’d got together.
    Thinking of how to work things out for the future, it is about trusting your gut feeling (the bad feeling you mention above). If you’re on a date with someone, and something niggles/doesn’t feel right I’d always ask myself now “What’s that about?” Before, I’d kind of ignored it or talked myself into believing I’d imagined it, now I try not to do that.  It’s also about getting out sooner rather than later.
    I had a pretty dysfunctional upbringing, so if something isn’t right I also think “Why is this triggering me, who or what does he remind me of?”
    And I do not believe for a second you attract people (or that I do). In my case, it was originally because I was more used to being around people with questionable behaviour growing up (lying, cheating, emotionally and physically abusive). I’d find something uncomfortable and not right but instead of walking away I’d bury my feelings and even think it must be me. And this is why certain people stayed in my life, I didn’t attract them but they knew they could stay and keep pulling the wool over my eyes. I’m not saying I was perfect in the way I’ve acted, I’ve done some not great things, but it pales in comparison with what I generally put up with. May not be the case with you, but thought I’d mention it.
    For me now, it’s about spotting the red flags and not putting up with certain things. Someone called Joseph Carver wrote several articles on “losers” on relationships on a site called counselling resource.. I think these articles are great, were very useful to me.
    Another book I read was “how to spot a dangerous man” by Sandra Brown. I don’t agree with all the book however she talks a lot about checklists, red flags to look out for. One of them I remember being that some women don’t question men in their lives.. it’s not about nagging but I can remember knowing what she meant. I’d have often not wanted to ask too much in case my exes said to me “What are you on about, don’t you trust me?”.
    Anyway.. it does get better, the more you work at it. I’m not quite there and maybe I’m on the extreme end as I’ve been out with a lot of people who have sociopathic tendencies, but I’m getting there.
    Good luck with it.

  15. 76
    Karl R

    Annie said: (#78)
    “Prior to me working on my issues, I continually dated narcissistic and manipulative men, and had narcissistic and manipulative friends. That’s because I was manipulative and narcissistic.”

    I agree with you that the scenario you describe (where someone choses someone similar to them) is a possible scenario. Given your background with two parents who shared the same traits, I can see why you would think it was the probable explanation.

    My parents are very different. My mother is almost a textbook example of obsessive-compulsive disorder. Without my father, she’d still be functional in society, but just barely. My father is relatively normal (other than acting as her enabler). While I have traits from both, I’m more like my father than my mother.

    But in the first 18 years of my life, my mother was a key player. A lot of her behaviors defined what I considered “normal.” I realized she wasn’t normal, but only her most excessive deviations actually registered as being abnormal. The rest of her behaviors seemed normal and familiar to me. I’d seen them my entire life.

    Because of that, I failed to see some red flags in a few of my early relationships. My expectations for normal behavior weren’t normal.

    I can’t tell you whether that’s what’s happening with Sharon, but it’s at least consistent with the known facts. She has trust issues. She’s incapable of recognizing the warning signs of liars … not once, but repeatedly.

  16. 77
    texasdarlin

    Everybody has their own beliefs about how we humans work.  There’s been a lot of research done on the matter and with time, theories have changed.  It wasn’t all that long ago psychologists believed that Schizophrenia was caused by mothers giving mixed messages to their children.  Not really the case as it turns out. Karl, in this last post talking about his mother-I’m impressed that he’s been willing to share so much, makes some valid points.  Regardless of whatever else you believe some behaviors become normalized.  That does not mean the behavior it self is healthy.  I don’t equate normal with healthy.  Too many of the people I work with come from severe dysfunction, but that’s normal behavior simply because it is all they know.  It is by no means healthy.  We can all theorize ad nauseum as to why Sharon or any of us have issues, but as Karl said his expectations of normal weren’t normal.  Karl gave us a very specific reason as to why.  Sharon did not.  Sharon did provides us with some additional information, but, (with a few exceptions), this thread has long since become something other than what the original questions was about and before everybody starts fussing at me I’m aware that I’ve contributed to that.  But then again maybe Sharon’s gained some useful insight.  At least I hope she has.

  17. 78
    sharon

    Trusting the bad feelings is great advice. But I have bad feelings about all the men I come across. “My gut instincts” are just a little off. Theoretically I have crossed paths with some respectable men in my life along with the jerks I’ve chosen to date. So I think I need more practical advice. Thanks Catherine. I’ll check out the books you’ve mentioned.

  18. 79
    starthrower68

    While I agree that chemistry is important, values-based dating is probably the most effective.  Evan talks about this all the time, even though he calls it something different.  Sharon, as you grow wiser, you’ll learn to date more deliberately and spend less time wondering what happened after it breaks bad.  It’s a learning process.

  19. 80
    Joey

    Sharon, the bad news is that you are probably not as attractive, either in personality or in looks, as you need to be in order to keep a man.  They are choosing other women instead of you and are using you because you may be not that smart to catch on to their double lives.  You are not seen as a long-term partner/wife.  I don’t know the reasons why these men chose the Other Women, but there were differences, and specifically areas that you were lacking in, and they found in these other girls.  The good news, is that you can make yourself irresistible to men if you focus on making yourself a better and more attractive person and caring future spouse.  It will be easier to focus on your own qualities, than it is not changing, and scaring off every other future boyfriend.

    1. 80.1
      Cat

      Joey #85 said: “Sharon, the bad news is that you are probably not as attractive, either in personality or in looks, as you need to be in order to keep a man.”

      Frankly, that’s just bullshit. You can be a “10” in looks, wealthy, successful, famous and still be cheated on. Take a quick look at some celebrities that are generally accepted as 10’s and who were cheated on: Sandra Bullock, Halle Berry, Elizabeth Hurley…

      Yes, people (men and women) should work at being attractive and fit, but that is no insurance that they won’t be cheated on.

  20. 81
    Joey

    Cat, a lot of Men cheat, which is expected and acceptable in today’s culture. But Sharon has stated that her many boyfriends always leave her for a better girlfriend.  In Sharon’s case, she is not good enough to be a wife of these Men.  I don’t know her personality, so I can’t determine why these Men chose someone else, but the relationship was not heading towards marriage.  Its not just looks, but having the right personality to be a good wife and partner and mother.  A lot of Women have GREAT Personalities and make great Mothers and Wives, and can stay married.  Its not just about Looks.  As a side note, what is the “expiration date of a relationship” – maybe these Men just did not want to marry her and found some one better.  It may be one month, six months, or 2 years, but most dating relationships end some time, unless Sharon really did see herself married to one of these guys.

  21. 82
    Selena

    Amen Cat. Especially in light of the high statistics given on cheating and reasons given for it.

    Did you read that article Joey?

  22. 83
    Joey

    Selena, just because someone is attractive does not mean they can hold onto a husband.  She has to have the personality of being a good spouse as well.  If Sharon has 8 boyfriends and all of them left her for someone else, then Sharon is Both not seen as a Good Girlfriend and not choosing compatible Men.  These Men are NOT Cheaters, they Settled Down with another women, that they found more compatible, fun, and an enjoyable partner in their future together.  I Blame Sharon for not choosing the right men for her, and for not being a good enough spouse to keep these men.  Because these Men are running away from Her, if she was their Ideal, then they would want to stay with her.  Its about compatibility and finding a Man who will choose you as their Number One priority.

  23. 84
    Selena

    Blarney Joey.  These men aren’t running away, they are choosing to string along 2 (or more?) women at the same time, unbeknownst to each other. It’s dishonest plain and simple. They ARE CHEATERS, on both women involved, and it is their personality that is at heart the problem.

  24. 85
    Karl R

    Joey said: (#89)
    “These Men are NOT Cheaters, they Settled Down with another women,”
    Sharon said: (original post)
    I STILL found out that he was engaged to another woman!
    Sharon said: (#32)
    “that is how one can be in a relationship for 2.5 years without knowing about the woman around for 5.”

    Joey, the man was dating his (now fiancee) for 5 years. For 2 1/2 of those years, he had an affair with Sharon. Unless he and his fiancee have an explicitly open relationship (which seems unlikely, since people in open relationships are typically explicitly open with all of their partners), then he was cheating on his fiancee.

    Reading comprehension for the win.

    Joey said: (#49)
    “Cheating does not mean you have to break up if you have found your Soul Mate.”

    Um … did you change your mind about whether it was cheating?

    I’m curious, of your past relationships where your partner cheated on you, have you decided to stick with that person because they were your “soul mate”?

    Joey said: (#49)
    “Unless there is a marriage contract, every man and woman has free will to sleep around, as long as there is a mutual understanding.”

    Sharon didn’t know about the other woman. There’s no indication that the other woman knew about Sharon. How can there be a “mutual understanding” if only one partner is in the know?

    Joey said: (#40)
    “Date them for 3 months max, and then tell them you missed your period and might be pregnant, and see how they react?”

    How well has that strategy worked in your previous relationships?

    Joey said: (#87)
    “Sharon has stated that her many boyfriends always leave her for a better girlfriend.”

    Where did Sharon say that?

    She said that these men have girlfriends, then they start having affairs with Sharon (without breaking up with their other girlfriend). It doesn’t sound to me like they’re “leaving” anyone.

  25. 86
    Kurt

    Sharon prefers these cheaters – it is so obvious.  She probably thinks that single guys she meets are “boring,” but likes the players who come across as partially unavailable.  Of course, those players are frequently unavailable because they are dating other women.  I can pretty much guarantee that Sharon is extremely self-centered – women like Sharon get what they deserve.

  26. 87
    Bee

    I agree with Denise #15 and Karl R. #81. We DO tend to attract what we think we deserve/what we are used to/those who are like this. I have had many a therapist and psychology professor tell me that. If you are insecure, you will attract someone who is also insecure, etc. Sharon may believe she does not have low self-esteem, but it’s still entirely possible that she does. Not many people recognize that about themselves or if they do they’re too proud to admit it. It’s also possible she has fears about intimacy and attracts men who are unavailable in some way so the relationship cannot progress past a certain point. This is probably unconsciously done.

    1. 87.1
      Evan Marc Katz

      It’s not “attract”, Bee. It’s “accept”. The only person who can “accept” someone with low-self-esteem is someone ELSE with low-self-esteem. People don’t fly into your world because you’re a magnet. If I meet someone with low-self-esteem, I distance myself because it’s toxic and draining. On the other hand, the insecure person “accepts” that same toxicity and then complains that she “attracts” the wrong men.

      The only difference is your tolerance for pain. At this point in my life, I have very little of it. Anyone who dates selfish and unavailable people clearly has a much higher threshold for being mistreated – and, likely, lower self-esteem.

  27. 88
    John

    Once the trust is gone it is sometimes gone forever.  If a couple get back together after someone has cheated they will always be looking out for the signs their partners is cheating again.

    If some cheats on their partner then the will cheat on the person who they have moved onto a new relationship with. 

  28. 89
    judy

    EMK – 94.  Yes, accept is a great key word.  When someone comes into your life and you realise there’s a real problem there, you end the relationship, preferably calmly.
    I find listening a huge, huge help in the beginning of a relationship.  Just let him tell me who he is.  Words speak volumes.
    Especially if he is talking for hours.
    You’ll learn if you can accept him in your life or not.

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