Serious question - it's not as simple as "just don't do it". If it were there'd be no need for forums like GaG. I'm asking as a close friend who has been there for her from the beginning but is at a loss on how to help her loved one. Love is not enough and it's not a solution.
I need concrete, executable plans of action or strategies, or profound realizations from a serial cheater or someone you know who was or is one. What did you or your friend/family member/acquaintance do to stop? What was rock bottom?
If you were in her position, what would you need from your best friend?
Most Helpful Guy
If it is a seemingly compulsive behaviour, then it is clearly an addiction - probably similar to masturbation-addiction.
First of all though I think you raise a good point of her potentially seperating sex from love. This is a common thing people do who have grown up being stunted in their sexual development in one way or another. In normal cases sexuality and love go hand in hand where one enhances the other and vice versa.
Furthermore what other problems could be the reason? Probably the kick she gets out of it, self-hate (and looking for outside approval), self-destructive behaviour, the thought of "I dont deserve this husband" and ending up actively sabotaging her own marriage, uncontrolled impulsiveness (which again is a different symptom of something deeper), trust-issues, quite probably parental and/or sexual violence (or other abuse as a child) in her past, etcetc.
There is quite a mean phrase for this which even though it is mean, its quite spot on: "A cock in your pussy will not stuff the hole in your heart."
Also I wouldn't be surprised if she increases the intensity of her sexual encounters (more kicks by rougher sex, multiple partners and whatnot) while decreasing the sexual encounters with her husband altogether. At this point she crossed the line already of cheating and then doing it again is much easier after you have crossed that line. Not to mention her guilt will create a self-fulfilling prophecy by seperating love and sex even further and thus this behaviour going on.
Anyway, that's just a few thoughts ranted down. If you have more questions, feel free to ask or write me a private message.1
Most Helpful Girl
Serial cheater here. Your friend needs to have a long thing about what, exactly, she is getting out of the cheating that makes it so addictive for her. In my case - I liked the high that I got from sleeping with a new partner but I came to realise that the biggest high I got was from the attention and flirting in the build up.
This is basically the result of having been a not attractive teenager but now an attractive adult. I've realised that it still see male attention as some sort of novelty, which makes it very hard not to engage when a guy does start flirting with me. However, the kind of guys that will flirt with your friend when she is in married will definitely just be after the sex, so cheating will not make her feel better about herself. She'll just feel like shit for being 1) used 2) unable to control herself and 3) doing something hurtful to her partner.
My long term partner knows about my many slip ups - as I tried to breakup with him and said that we should end it as I was worried I would just cheat on him again. He convinced me to stay, so I owe it to him to try and sort my sh*t out, as 90% of people would leave in that situation. Not many people get to fully confess multiple infidelities (so they are no longer living with the guilt of secrets) and have their partner still be there.2
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