13 Things Nobody Tells You About The Way Cheaters Think

It’s a sore subject we hardly wish to ponder upon – infidelity. Yet, when the unthinkable happens, we’re often left grappling in the dark, questioning motives and torn by conflicting emotions. While the sheer act of cheating is abhorrent to most, understanding the psychology behind it can offer a glint of clarity in the seemingly inexplicable. Here, we take a deep-dive into the minds of those who’ve strayed, uncovering 13 facets of cheaters’ cognitive framework that rarely sees the light.

Rationalization Runs Rampant

Dissecting the cheater’s mind uncovers a persuasive narrative in favor of infidelity. In the labyrinth of justifications, ethical roadblocks are non-existent, and each wily argument resonates with the underlying belief that the cheating was ‘necessary’ or even ‘right.’

Cheaters excel at constructing airtight arguments, blurring the lines between right and wrong. If they can explain their actions away as a response to an unfulfilled emotional need or a justifiable retaliation for a perceived wrong, the infidelity starts to seem more like a natural course correction than a betrayal. It’s a troubling tendency rooted in self-preservation and ego, one that renders moral grey areas a vibrant spectrum of color in their worldview.

Entitlement as the Catalyst of Betrayal

“I deserve better” is a battle cry for those who feel slighted by their significant others. This sentiment often morphs into a dangerous precursor to infidelity, where the cheating partner believes their actions are warranted, even owed.

Entitlement galvanizes them, whispering affirmations that they are, in fact, deserving of the affection that they seek outside their primary relationship. The entitlement could stem from any sense of lack in the relationship — lack of appreciation, lack of attention, or lack of intimacy. It sets the stage for an emotional uprising, justifying their chase for what they believe is rightly theirs.

The Empathy Deficiency

Cheating is a selfish act, one that is commonly underpinned by a lack of empathy. When infidelity is on the horizon, the ability to put oneself in the position of the partner is often off the table.

The cheater’s emotional landscape, at this point, is usually a stark contrast to their partner’s. While the partner may fight to keep the relationship’s integrity intact, the cheater often finds it easier to detach, propelled by their unmet needs and a skewed ethical compass that underestimates the potential damage their actions may cause.

The Thrill of the Risk

Leaping into the arms of another is knee-deep in the exhilarating unknown. Cheaters often find the act of cheating itself quite the adventure, full of thrill and secrecy that is an emotional jackpot in their lives.

The prospect of getting away with it is an intoxicating game in itself. The calculated risks involved in orchestrating secret liaisons and evading detection serve as thrilling ploys that ignite their sense of daring and provide the much-needed ‘spice’ that they believe is missing from their lives elsewhere.

The Emotional Disconnect

Cheaters may suffer from an emotional disconnection that makes the act of infidelity far more feasible. This dissonance often translates to a belief that their actions are incongruous with their ‘real’ selves.

It isn’t uncommon for cheaters to view their cheating selves as distinct from their regular, fair self. They often compartmentalize the two personas, treating their extramarital affairs as out-of-body experiences that bear no reflection on their identity as a partner, parent, or professional.

The Skill of Compartmentalizing

Keeping the emotional luggage of infidelity in a separate, well-sealed box is a hallmark of the cheater’s mindset. This separation blurs the moral framework, making it easier to perform the deceitful act.

This ability to segregate parts of life ensures that the cheating partner’s day-to-day interactions and responsibilities go unscathed. They’re highly efficient at flicking the ‘off’ switch on their cheating impulse in the presence of their primary partner, showcasing an unnerving mental agility that most would struggle to comprehend, let alone match.

The Blame Game

When the dust settles, it’s not uncommon for cheaters to shift the blame for their actions onto their partners. They seek solace in painting a narrative where their cheating was a reaction to the partner’s inadequacies or wrongdoings.

This justification technique is a defense mechanism, carefully crafted to shield the cheater’s self-esteem. By framing their actions as a response to a partner’s perceived failure, they reconcile their guilt and build a comfortable, albeit deceitful, foundation from which their actions are explained away.

Silence Speaks Volumes

One of the ways cheaters bolster their secret lives is by maintaining a strategic silence. Ignoring the elephant in the room serves a dual purpose — it avoids uncomfortable conversations about fidelity while allowing the infidelity to thrive in the unspoken space.

This radio silence on the true state of the relationship’s fidelity is a silent nod to the cheater’s acceptance of their dual life. It’s a gateway to further their narrative that cheating is a one-off detour rather than a fundamental breach of trust that requires immediate attention and accountability.

Chasing Shadows of Validation

Cheaters often seek validation through their actions, desperately scrounging for evidence that what they’re doing is indeed warranted. This search for approval, often from the very person they cheat with or their echo chamber, is a twisted beacon of hope for the cheater.

To be validated is to further be rallied behind their antagonistic narrative of a love-starved, underappreciated partner. A ‘yes man’ for their forays into infidelity acts as a crutch for the crumbling moral framework, reinforcing their skewed version of need and entitlement.

The Impulsive Culprit

For some, cheating isn’t a meticulously planned move; it’s a spontaneous, heat-of-the-moment impulse. Being guided by these compulsions can lead to reckless decisions with lifelong repercussions.

The impulsive cheater is at the mercy of the fleeting moment, unable to weigh the pros and cons with a sober, clear-headed approach. Their impulsivity can be attributed to a range of factors, from the irresistible allure of a new encounter to the mounting pressure of their own dissatisfaction within the relationship.

The Allure of Escapism

Infidelity is a potent form of escapism for some. By focusing on the excitement of the outside relationship, they can momentarily evade their more mundane problems at home.

This form of mental evasion is particularly seductive to those struggling with the day-to-day grind of their relationships. Cheating, in this context, becomes the ‘getaway car’ to a life less ordinary, allowing the cheater a fleeting taste of an existence that often starkly contrasts their own.

The Weaving of a Habitual Web

For the serial cheater, infidelity is not a ‘one and done’ kind of deal; it’s a pattern. Once the veil of infidelity has been lifted, it becomes apparent that the cheater is often ingrained in a habitual cycle of seeking external validation, often at the expense of their partner’s trust and well-being.

A pattern of cheating often indicates a deeper and more entrenched issue within the cheater’s psyche. It suggests a habitual reliance on cheating as a solution, a reflex response to their own relational dissatisfaction, unable or unwilling to tackle it head-on in a transparent, respectful manner.

The Aftermath: Regret and Rationalization

After the fallout, how a cheater perceives and processes their actions can be quite telling. Post-cheating remorse can take many forms, with some genuinely regretful while others work tirelessly to reconstruct a narrative where their actions were, in some convoluted way, justified.

The cheater’s ability to either own up to or twist the narrative post-cheating is a mirror to their emotional maturity and capacity for genuine remorse. While some may take steps to right their wrongs and rebuild based on truth and penance, others bury the guilt under a mountain of rationalized, self-serving explanations.

Conclusion: Shedding Light on Darkness

At the core, infidelity is an intensely personal and subjective matter, one that tugs at the delicate threads of trust and loyalty. While understanding the mechanics of the cheater’s mind is not to absolve them of their actions, it does shed light on the multitude of layers that compose the human heart.

In dissecting the many curious ways in which cheaters rationalize their actions, we’re not excusing their behavior, but rather seeking to comprehend the intricate dance of psychological factors at play. Perhaps, through this understanding, we can tiptoe a little closer to preventing such hurtful transgressions, fostering a culture where open communication and self-reflection reign supreme.

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