There are a lot of reasons for betrayal – boredom, a need to tempt, or a wish to raise one’s self-esteem. A betrayal always has some consequences for a couple, but, according to psychologists, it doesn’t necessarily mean that love for a person we’ve cheated on is dead. Thus, why do we feel guilty?

Actually, psychologists say that if we feel guilty after we’ve cheated on our partner, everything is not that bad since the feeling of guilt means that we value a relationship we are in. We appreciate our union and worry that we might have hurt another person.  In this respect, let’s underline the fact that if we say “betrayal,” we are talking about a stable couple.

Unless we have chosen a partner and we are comparing opportunities, sexual ones included, we don’t call it a betrayal and don’t feel guilty about it.

It isn’t easy to dare betray a partner. A betrayal always has definite consequences and needs some excuses.

Maybe, a betrayal is trendy nowadays, and we need to follow this trend blindly rejecting all moral objections and suppressing the feeling of guilt? However, sociologists have polled dozens of unfaithful husbands and found out stunning things: the so-called hedonists whose life goal is to get as much satisfaction as possible never find it easy to betray. There are definite reasons for cheating, and it needs explanations.

What makes us cheat    

Psychologists are trying to find the deepest reasons why people cheat. Human behavior is influenced by many motives, and at the same time, the true essence differs from what we see on the surface. It may happen that a womanizer tempts women just because he is driven by a desperate desire to bring his mother’s love back, not just because he lacks satisfaction he claims to experience in a relationship with his wife.

Surprisingly enough, according to psychologists, sometimes being unfaithful is a method to save a couple! In family therapy, there is a notion of the “third invited person.” This secret co-partner supports the existence of a union by helping to release tension accumulated in a couple. The point is that this tension is not of a sexual character only. A cheater may lack acceptance, care, or interest in their affairs.

Those people who cheat in order to get new impressions, psychologists advise paying attention to how their creative side is embodied: cheating is one of the main means of compensation for a lack of creativity. Whereas for women who have sacrificed a career or personal development for a family, betrayal can be a way of shaking off an assumed role of a home-fairy, a return to their own essence.         

Hidden and obvious

Until we want to change our relationship in a couple and try to avoid hurting a partner, we can hide our love adventures. Once we find such traces of crime as messages, lipstick marks, etc., it isn’t a mere coincidence but a warning: “Something went wrong! Pay attention to me!”

Quite often, a betrayal becomes an excuse to discuss a relationship, re-evaluate partners’ meaning to each other. The feeling of guilt is quite complex. If we try to analyze it, we will find out that it is imbued with anxiety, buoyancy and even joy.

To understand it better, imagine a child who has eaten a sweet without permission or has gone for a walk without adults. The reaction of a person who is being cheated upon is a powerful feeling, too. The power of these emotions gives a couple new energy that may revitalize a worn-out relationship.

A direct discussion may have different consequences. Perhaps, partners will admit that their union gives them no satisfaction and will consider breaking up. But it may also happen that feelings will become more intense. Provided a couple manages to solve a conflict, a connection between partners becomes stronger.

In any case, betrayal isn’t happening only to one of the partners. It is something happening to a couple, to US, not him or her. That is why insults and self-critique are useless. To understand what is happening to US as a couple, we have to ask ourselves why this cheating happened, what I am trying to find, what need I want to satisfy.

A new definition of love

As all primates, we are polygamous by nature, but in a moral and social sense, we are functioning as monogamous beings. Thus, we live in constant conflict: our biological nature contradicts a system of our values. Therefore, to calm our consciousness, we need explanations.

As psychologists put it, when our desire contradicts our social and moral “I,” we start looking for rational excuses not to fall a victim to a mental breakdown. We are accusing our partners of imperfections, based on a false assumption that if they satisfied us, we would have never thought about sexual games outside our union.

In this respect, we are talking about the process of consuming love and turning it into a means of satisfying your needs. It is supposed that we have to get complete satisfaction from love. If it doesn’t happen so, we are trying to make up for this lack, sometimes with cheating.

However, a way to a genuine relationship opens only through contact of two people’s subconsciousness. That’s what we should strive for; if such a contact doesn’t save us from cheating, it will definitely help to deeply feel the complexity of our relationship with another person.

Perhaps, it may also lead us to a more “humane” form of love: faithful but aware of our inner essence, that won’t fool us about a person we have to care for first of all…about ourselves.

Any tips?    

  • Regardless of your motives, remember that cheating may seriously hurt your partner.
  • Try to imagine the consequences if a partner finds out the truth. Are you ready to lead a double life without remorse of consciousness?
  • Re-consider your values. See if temporary satisfaction can make up for breaking up with a person you love or who genuinely cares about you.
  • Remember that honesty is the best policy. Thus, once it seems to you that your partner cannot satisfy your needs, talk seriously and sincerely on the matter. Your second half may even have no notion that you lack something in a relationship.
  • In order not to accumulate offenses, negative emotions, and suspicions, don’t keep anything to yourself. Never postpone. Always share your emotions, thoughts, and suggestions as soon as possible since a strong relationship implies the timely mutual efforts of both partners.  

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