The Cheating Game
There is probably not a simple answer to why people cheat since each case is unique in its own way. But if - or when - it actually happens to you, what do you do?
“It was a scene straight out of a dramatic movie,” Lovely D.A., 25, recalled – now able to give a sardonic smile while looking back at the experience, though, he claimed, he used to be so affected by the experience it almost ruined his life.
Lovely D.A. came home from work earlier than usual one day to surprise Amar, his boyfriend of only six months then – he just quit his job, and he thought he needed some kind of moral support while trying to put things in perspective. But soon as he entered the house, he “somehow sensed something wasn’t right – maybe it’s just me, but there was an eerie silence that seemed to envelope everything.” Gay guy’s intuition or not, true enough, when Lovely D.A. reached their bedroom, Amar was “dancing horizontally” with his best friend. “As if finding out wasn’t painful enough, when we had a talk later, Amar put all the blame on me – that it was I who drove him to cheat because I was often cold to him, I didn’t really satisfy him sexually, I didn’t return the intensity of his feelings, et cetera,” Lovely D.A. said. “But I’d like to think that all that’s in the past now.”
“Infidelity is a sign of something being wrong,” Deborrah Cooper, author of How to Tell If Your Man is Cheating… And What to Do About It!, said. “Admittedly, some men are womanizers (and vice versa) and what is wrong with them is that they have issues with commitment and intimacy that they refuse to deal with and escape into a fantasy relationship with another (partner) time after time. Other men (or women), though, are seeking something they feel is missing in their primary relationship – understanding, excitement in bed, a partner that is challenging to them, et cetera.”
Thus, SingleScene.net, an online counselling service provider, added: “There is probably not a simple answer to why (people) cheat since each case is unique in its own way. As such, every case must be treated differently.”
Interestingly, the reasons most often cited for infidelity have not changed over time: Pure sex. Pure and simple, some may cheat simply for sex. Some, particularly men, is “able to have sex with another without having feelings for that sexual partner, or without affecting the emotions for the partner,” SingleScene.net stated.
For some, it’s to boost the ego, since having sex with another partner aside from the regular one means one is still desirable. As SingleScene.net stated: “The more men he has, the bigger the boost. If you don’t believe us, just listen to guys talking about sex, they are more likely to talk about quantity rather than quality.”
Similarly harking back to the “very basics of male instincts,” guys who collect “trophies” continue doing so even when already married “as a means of proving themselves to other guys and to themselves.”
And then for some, it’s a way to satisfy the need for excitement. “Sometimes a relationship can squash that excitement, no matter how good the relationship,” SingleScene.net stated.
But then again, there are some who cheat mainly because they can.
“Trust is one of the most important ingredients in (any relationship),” Cooper said. “When infidelity, or even the suspicion of infidelity rears its ugly head, that trust is violated.” And when this happens, something needs to be done.
First is to identify the existence of the problem. A partner may be up to something if he:
- No longer wants to have sex, or couldn’t seem to stand being romantic.
- Suddenly has to work late and has all kinds of new obligations that take him/way from home or one’s company repeatedly.
- Gets mysterious phone calls, prefers taking calls out of your earshot, or, if that’s not possible, whispers while talking.
- Discouraged from ever looking at the mobile phone.
- Arrives home and runs straight into the bath or shower without even a simple physical contact with the boyfriend.
- Has strange hairs on his clothing or in his car, especially if he can’t explain their presence.
- Gets extremely nice all of a sudden, particularly if it’s out of his character.
- Breaks dates, stands date up, shows up hours late with no reasonable explanation.
- Starts to dress differently, and/or does or requests wildly different things in bed.
- Begins to be abusive all of a sudden.
- Gets cleaned up and shaved to go fishing, gets too dressed up to watch TV with the barkada, or reeks of perfume though only going to the wet market.
- Changes his established routine with no plausible reason.
- Becomes suddenly forgetful and need to be told everything thrice.
However, a suspicion will always only be a suspicion, unless it is verified by the people involved. And since the signs may also signify other problems, it is relevant for the parties involved to communicate. This remains to be the best way to discuss what really is the problem in the relationship.
The second step, therefore, is confrontation. “With infidelity, it is difficult to find the middle ground between denial and overreaction,” Cooper said, “particularly since the stakes involved are high.” Nonetheless, this is very important – and to be able to reach that point, an important step is to be able to meet the problem head-on. “If you are sure he is cheating, confront him immediately. Don’t wait until you catch him in the act with his drawers down!”
And lastly, resolve. What happens after the confrontation is entirely up to the people involved.
In the end, “the issue rotates around how well you love yourself,” Lovely D.A. said. “If you know your partner will always be a cheater and still choose to stay in the relationship, then put up with the hardships that come your way until your partner gets tired of his/her fling, or of you. You are not entitled to complaining at all, since you know the facts yet choose to tolerate them. But if you choose to leave and move on, good on you. At least you’ll have a chance to start over again, with someone who truly deserves your trust.”
He should know – Lovely D.A. has long left Amar, and is looking at “starting afresh.”