6 Reasons People Cheat

Why do People Cheat?

The question of "why do people cheat?" or "why did he/she cheat on me when I was so good to them?" are extremely common. In short, people cheat for a wide variety of reasons and more often than not, it has nothing to do with you or your relationship, it's the cheater themselves with the issue. I believe that people who cheat can love their partners (usually they don't) but they lack respect for them. Love and respect should go hand in hand and if one is missing, it dramatically changes the elucidation of the relationship.

1. Attention from One Person is Not Enough6 Reasons People Cheat

You could say there's nothing wrong with that but there's a lot wrong with it when you're the one who's been betrayed. It's hard to understand if you're someone who is happy with the affection of one but you know that not everyone is the same. People who feel attention from one person isn't enough could be feeling lonely and insecure but giving them all your time isn't enough to fix it.

2. It's the Norm

Many people have grown up in environments in which their parents often cheated, forgiven each other and then returned to normal, causing a vicious cycle. Or most of their friends have cheated on their partner and gotten away with it or have appeared unphased by the inevitable consequences. If that's what you're grown up around, you may believe it to be the norm and be more likely to cheat.

3. Commitment Issues

If you've been cheated on, then you may have been the unfortunate person to have to suffer the consequences of someone who's realized they're not ready for a relationship. They may have tried their hardest to make it work but being single is what they're most comfortable with at this stage in their life.

4. No Reason at All

Well, not entirely. They may be happy with their relationship and with you but if the temptation is there, they go for it. This could be due to lack of self control or they have a spontaneous personality. I believe these types of cheaters are more likely to regret their decision after it's happened, but that doesn't mean they should be forgiven.

5. Insecurity

Sometimes having a partner but also being able to sleep with someone else gives people an ego boost, often chased by those who are insecure. People who feel like they're not good enough for you may find solace in sleeping with someone who they feel is in their league, yet they want to keep you because they're infatuated with you.

6. Unhappy in Their Relationship

The reason why people who are unhappy in their relationship, don't end the relationship instead of cheating, is unclear. It could be that they're holding onto the possibility that their relationship will improve whilst the other side of them is telling them to leave and return to single life, so when that opportunity arises, they take it without much thought.

There's not much you can do about someone who's unhappy after numerous attempts to improve the relationship. Some relationships fall apart naturally and you can't do anything to stop it, just like you can't do anything to stop someone from cheating on you.

Alcohol is NOT an Excuse

Blaming alcohol is just a cover up to hide the real reason they cheated and to keep you by their side. Those who have been drunk, know that you still have a conscience and a good amount of control over your actions.

If they claim to have "blacked out" and somehow managed to cheat on you, that's evidently a lie unless they were forced to do something against their will, which I'm sure they'd be more concerned about. If someone cannot stay faithful under the influence of alcohol, then they should make the responsible decision to drink less or avoid it altogether if they respected the relationship or choose to be single.

It's NEVER Your Fault

All in all, it's unclear as to why someone cheats. Most cheaters don't know why themselves or would never admit the real reason, so you shouldn't waste time trying to find out, it certainly wouldn't change what's already been done.

If you're reading this because you've recently been cheated on, don't immediately blame yourself or beat yourself up about it because it may not have had anything to do with you, unless you cheated on them and they did it out of revenge. Don't ask why they cheated, ask yourself how you're going to move on from the relationship and follow through with it. You can do it. Time heals everything.


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Most Helpful Guy

  • “if you love two people at the same time, choose the second. Because if you really loved the first one, you wouldn't have fallen for the second.”- Johnny Depp

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Most Helpful Girl

  • I was engaged to a "man" (he's more like a very immature little boy) who cheated on me with every girl that would him the time of day. He was such a good liar, and he made up so many lies to keep it from me. We lived together, so he had to be very sneaky. Oh, I did everything for him. I sacrificed everything I possibly could just to be with him. And he did nothing but lie to me and disrespect me. I don't know how I put up with that for so long. But eventually I got tired of being treated like ship and I left him. Best decision of my life!

    I asked him why he cheated on me, because I honestly could not think of a single thing that I wasn't giving him. At first he said he didn't know. He said he was just stupid and he didn't know what he was doing. Yes, he is indeed stupid, but he knew exactly what he was doing. He would plan everything out so well, you can't call that a mistake.

    Well, eventually I realized what a low life sad excuse for a human being he actually is. He cheated on me because he had no confidence. And with good reason.

    It's been a year since I left him and he still won't leave me alone (even after I moved across the country to get away from him). That just shows what a low life he really is.

    So ladies and gentleman, if you ever get cheated on/have been cheated on, I know it's very hard not to blame yourself and wonder what you were doing wrong. But I assure you it is NOT your fault. Cheating is a reflection of the cheater, not of you. And in time you will be able to see how worthless that person actually was, and you will be so glad that you found out of their cheating so you could leave their sorry ass! You are all awesome and keep your head up =]

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What Guys Said 20

  • Hmm, interesting, but still I think it would be hard or literally impossible to forgive a gf that have cheated on me. Maybe she had reason for it, but come on for someone that really loves you and are truthful to you shouldn't make a action like that.

    I don't know about others, but I could never forgive someone that have cheated on me. First of all I believe every person had a choice to not do it. They can blame that they were drunk or were affected by alcohol, but come on they had a choice to control themself to not become drunk. The second personally reason were that if they have cheated once, it's very high possibility that they will do it again. So, for me at least, I would lose much of my trust that I had to my partner. And if it were like I should forgive her, who says that she won't do it again. She have done it once, so why not do it again.

    If I were in a relationship I would/could never cheated on my partner or would never put myself in that situation. I would be truthful to my gf and I would expect the same. If she had a problem I would love to hear about it and fix it with her. I believe there is no problems that couldn't be fixed, but cheating is unforgivable in my point of view. So I would rather that my gf should come and discuss what ever that's bother her and we both should try to fix it together. :)

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  • I know why people cheat... like you have listed, there are many reasons but they can be put into categories and dealt with. I can be naive enough to say I've seen the ultimate reason why but why be like that...

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  • I have a theory about it. I think some people cheat because they don't want to hurt their SO by breaking up with them. Which is ironic considering it ends up hurting and insulting them more. But it kind of makes sense when you think about it from a psychological perspective.

    They don't want to be with someone anymore so they cheat. This way the person cheated feels more anger than sadness which makes the cheater feel more at ease or in peace with the breakup. The fact that the person cheated is likely to feel immediate anger means they are also more likely to get over the 5 stages of grief faster than if they just broke up in the first place. e. g. breaking up = the girl could be depressed for 1-2 years while she will almost instantly get over the guy if she knows he cheated on her. This isn't always the case though, as cheating can also cause bigger trauma which can have the reverse effect.

    So it could be some kind of twisted subconscious mechanism to both avoid feeling too much guilt/pain/sadness and to shorten the grief duration caused by their lack of love.

    This doesn't change the fact that cheating is wrong of course. The end should never justify the means.

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  • not to be pessimistic or anything but i think you forgot to also add that...

    7- most people dont have the balls or the ovaries to end a relationship and move on to another

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  • Nothing ever justifies cheating on the person you are dating or are married to. You can make as many excuses as you want, but the fact remains that cheating is wrong. Cheaters are low-life scum who are not ready for a true relationship.

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  • I think most acts of cheating are by a smallish group of habitual cheaters. For them 1 & 2 are usually true.

    6 you see with two scenarios really - those using the cheating as a way of breaking up, and thise where there really are strong reasons they aren't breakig up.

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  • the concept of cheating has been around for centuries. one of the reason people cheat is they think they won't get caught if they do it. I mean I have cheated on my SO several times and I have never been caught. If you do it once and you don't get caught then you are most likely to do it again. Sometimes it can give you a thrill as well. But the reason I cheat is because of the thrill i get. I do regret it but it doesn't keeps me awake at night. Sometimes cheating can make your relationship because if you regret it that means you care for her, if you don't then you should break up.

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    • If you don't regret your actions, then maybe you should leave your SO.

    • Psssh, if you really cared you wouldn't cheat on her all the time. I hope she finds out and leaves you.

  • I truly believe the most common for cheating is the very first one mentioned ("one person's attention isn't enough").

    Some people will always seek emotional/sexual variety, and no matter how AWESOME that one person is...
    ...
    ... the problem is, said person wants more than one person for variety reasons.

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  • At what age does the cheating affect the kids in the relationship and what kind of after-affects occur? Going back to when you said that if it happens in a family unit and one partner cheats on the other while kids are involved.

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    • at age 0 to moving out, that's the hard truth. And cheating in itself does not harm them, but the damage it couases to the relationship does. Growing up with one parent (asuming said parent is able to accept the past, and not openly hate the other partner) is in fact arguablyless harmfull than effects like open argueing between parents, parents unable to trust eachother, parents blaming eachother for cheating in the future...
      So indirectly it fucks the kid up.

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    • exactly. Kids learn with their sight. They learn what they see, and that's what's normal to them. This is also why kids of cheating parents are more likely to cheat as adults.
      And this is why someone needs to break the icious cycle

    • @Take Owner & @dartmaul15 - So basically I'm indirectly fucked up...

  • Men cheat because it is not in our nature to be monogamous. Women cheat because there is a much smaller pool of men that women find appealing than vise versa. If they find one (or more than one) they are more likely to attempt to appease him.

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  • Cheating is completely natural behavior.

    For men, it means more opportunity to perpetuate his genetic code.

    For women, it means an opportunity for her offspring to have the genes of a more desirable mate, while procuring commitment and provisioning from her current partner.

    So it's quite natural, for a man to want to have many partners, and a woman to want to have a better partner.

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    • "Baby, I love you, you give me everything I could hope for. Now, I'm going to go let this hot guy, with a huge cock, knock me up so you & I can raise it together... "
      ROFL!!! Yep, guys should totally not be worried about commitment...

    • I understand this completely and I consider it in a lot of cases, but I feel with our level of intelligence, if you choose to be in a loyal committed relationship, you must stand by your word. There are animals which stay with one partner for the rest of their lives yet we find it difficult. It's more about the betrayal and lying to the other, than the actual cheating.

    • "There are animals which stay with one partner for the rest of their lives yet we find it difficult."

      Yeah, those animals aren't primates.

  • The Reason one and third are pretty much the main reason.

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  • 6 is probably the most i don't wanna say popular but that's the word.
    1's happening more and more with the advent of ease of access the Internet provides.
    5. Is complete bollocks there's always a reason.

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  • Apparently President Obama has a "Love Nest" according to Yahoo news.

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  • Toring one P€$$¥ isn't enough. Time to try out a new one ;P

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  • I think people will and can cheat... it's human.

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  • #7 opportunity to cheat due to being in high demand. I can only speak from a guy's perspective. In the dating world, there's guys that can get women like trees can get leaves and there's men who can't get a woman to save their lives. The guys that can easily get women are the kind that the majority of women want and the guys know this so a lot of guys will cheat. not all will, but that's very few and far in between. There's a lot of guys out there that would be loyal, but the majority of them aren't physically appealing to women and/or are broke so they won't get the time of day. This kind of shallowness leaves guys who have everything going for them with little to no competition and thus they cheat. Women also want a guy that is ultra desirable to women and want a guy that they can flaunt in other women's faces and make them envy them.

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    • Yeah, that's true. I kind of touched up on that on #4, if the temptation is there. My boyfriend is that kind of guy who can get almost any girl so he's not good at sticking to one girl because he likes the attention but I don't blame him, who wouldn't?

    • yea this is a big one that these lists tend to usually ignore, for a woman to cheat its as simple as putting yourself out there but a man will have to put in work unless they're really attractive and confident. These guys know they're hot stuff so the confidence issues a lot of men have are not there and it puts them a full step ahead of other men. You don't even have to be super attractive since a lot of times women will fall for humor and confidence alone if you know what you're doing.

    • Exactly. That's why I don't understand why a lot of women get mad when the majority of guys aren't physically attractive to them. women almost always like the same guys and cheaters and players will exist as long as women's spectrum of what they find attractive is small.

  • The reasons are different for all men and rarely have to do with the "dogs lick their balls" scenario. Also the "never is your fault" is not true as you somewhat stated. Men want to feel needed. Men also have emotions and will start to lose their sexual attraction after they realize the image of who the woman was to him is shattered. The reason why most relationships don't work out is they are based on a lie. Yes some men and some women are just scummy liars/horndogs but the ones that aren't do it for valid reasons or for reasons that usually can be traced back to childhood/parental issues.

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    • One more thing to add. Many people refuse to let anything good happen to them. Being jealous for no legitimate reason, pushing someone away and accusing the other of cheating will produce a relationship where cheating will occur. It's hard to stop playing the victim role and no coincidence that some people keep being cheated on. They blame the world and the people in it and cannot see the self sabotage.

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    • Wow, don't assume. That downvote was already there before I commented, it wasn't me! I rarely vote people.

    • I actually never saw one person blame themselves when cheated on. Regardless if you down voted me or not I don't think you got anything out of what I wrote. I put some good thoughts into it and have experience on both sides of the issue.

  • My ex-girlfriend cheated on me. Even though it been 8 years later. I can't get over it. She has. But then again she hasn't cheated on current boyfriend or ex-boyfriends. Maybe I was Mr. Good guy or Mr. Nice guy too much. Being Mr. Nice guy or good guy don't get any guy anywhere in a relationship. Girls really don't want that in a guy it never works.

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    • maybe you haven't provided enough intimacy... that's what nice guys do... they are perfect except you can never get enough sex

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    • Nice guys always lose out. They say its because they are more boring. I read an article that in America, women initiate the divorces more than men and the number one reason is because the husbands were boring. I don't know... I am also a nice guy who can't even attract a girl yet alone have relationship issues.

    • I'm not saying that it's his fault he was cheated on. I'm saying that intimacy is important to keep the thoughts of cheating away. I'm in a similar situation.. My bf is perfect except he has low sexual drive and it makes me crazy, because I want it more often.

      Nice guys, don't get frustrated. You are great! It's just girls more often choose the better looking guys, because their primate instinct wants them to have children with better genes. Even though we are using protection these days, the instinct is still there, subconsciously.

  • Because we can.

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What Girls Said 12

  • if people are unhappy in where they are, then solve it. if they have put in efforts and yet can't salvage the rs best to end it. be fair to the both parties.

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  • There's no excuse to cheating but I will say that a person can certainly drive you to do it. I've seen many cases where cheating actually helped the relationship. Some people use the person that they cheat with to realize what they have was better to begin with.

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  • I don't think it's anyone's place to say someone should not be forgiven. That is an extremely personal choice that has nothing to do with anyone else.

    I've been cheated on before and been forgiven, I've also cheated and been forgiven. Sometimes it works out and was worth it, other times it is not, but we live and learn.

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    • I feel that if you're cheated on and take them back, then they're playing you for a fool. I forgave my ex for cheating but I never went back to him, he clearly was happier with other girls and I deserved better.

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    • I know exactly what you mean and in someway I feel with you, but I don't think there is any good reason you can cheat. Come on, I know he ask you nice about it and really want to show that he truly loves you, but why would you the person you loved over everything cheat on you. He has absolutely no reason to do it and at least not a good reason for it in my opinion.

      You are really a kind-hearted person that can forgive someone that have cheated on you. I can tell you already this, but what ever reason my gf would try to reason with me why she cheated, it wouldn't work because a human being have always a choice and she should have known better not to take the wrong one.

      But this is very interesting. If you don't mind writing it here, could I ask why you cheated? Because I think that's makes a effect on us. I think if you have cheated already in a previous relationship, then it would be much easier to forgive your bf if he did the same.

    • @LastGirlScout I agree with you. I feel that cheating is a very taboo topic and many people are just so black/white about it. Everyone says that they would move on or that they deserved better but who are we to say what someone else should do in this situation? My father cheated on my mother 12 years ago and never cheated on her again. I know for a fact. She might not have forgotten but she forgave him and luckily he has been the best father to my bro and I and showers my mom with anything that she wants. My mother was so hurt that it made him want to be a better person because he was hurt that he hurt her. Situations like that make me realize that sometimes forgiveness is the key to happiness. We're all of course entitled to an opinion but we must be open to see it from more than one side.

  • the reason why men cheat is the same reason why dogs lick their balls, because they can.- Samantha, Sex in the City hahaha. But really people cheat because they can or that they know deep down the person will forgive or because they see someone attractive and thinking what if their partner ends up being the last person they have sex with. But anyone who says it's alright i think it's foolish to think that way, if they know that their partner would be extremely hurt by them cheating they should never cheat, if your partner is fine with it then it's ok. But it's BS when people say they are in love with their bf/gf and still go around cheating.

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  • Boredom and fear of commitment - so they messed up but get to pretend they didn't do it just to lead to a breakup.

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  • I think that people cheat because they are bored. They need each other for stability not because of sexual attraction and when they get stability, they want to fool around of course. it's hard to meet someone with both stability and sexual attraction.
    that's all. You can't lie about yourself.

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  • There shouldn't b a reason y people cheat because they just should do it

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    • i'll asume you were supposed to say "shouldn't do it" :)

      I agree. There's no excuse, and there's no reason. If you feel it MIGHT be an option, talk to your partner. Problems can be worked out, and if not, at least have the goddamn courtecy to end things in a civil way before running off to find a new lover. If you're unable to commit and be exlusive, then don't frigin be exclusive. Being exlusive and knowing you will cheat just makes you a major dick!

      WTF is wrong with some people nowadays? :(

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    • Could agree more with ya guys. .)

    • Yes i ment shouldn't sorry
      i have been cheeted on and it made me mad when he said the reason was cuz he didn't wanna hurt my feelings some people need to think ahead

  • I don't understand it, if a person is not happy they should just end the relationship..

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  • 7- Because they are pigs

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  • I read this article and not a single one of these reasons touched on the reasons that were given by any of the friends I have who have cheated. From what I have observed over the years, it almost always boils down to the cheater feeling lonely, unfulfilled, stressed, sexually frustrated, or criticized in their current relationship. And they are rarely looking to end their current relationship. Just needing some additional support, a bit more physical intimacy, and sometimes the ego boost and excitement that come with having a new lover.

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    • These were just 6 of the many possible reasons, I'm aware there are more that I didn't touch on. I did talk about being lonely and unhappy as well as wanting more attention from people.

  • What do you mean "often chased by those who are insecure"? Who's the subject in this phrase? Who's being chased and more importantly, who is the one chasing?

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    • I meant that ego boosts are often chased by those who feel insecure.

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    • Insecure people often go after whatever it is that gives them an ego boost and makes them feel better. It's not that hard to understand.

    • It's just your wording was really confusing and hard to understand. I wasn't sure if you were talking about the cheater or the person they cheated with being insecure.

  • I've always felt that the decision to cheat is pretty much black or white with no grey areas. Either you love/care/respect the person or you don't. No justifications necessary...

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