Think There Is A Chance You’ll Cheat? Here’s How To Avoid It…
Admit it, how many of you have thought about cheating on your significant other? Ever fantasize about a friend or co-worker…a complete stranger while you’re booed up? If you’ve ever been in a long term relationship, sometimes the thought has crossed your mind a time or two – not because you’re no longer in love, but simply because you’re bored or need some excitement. You’d never act on these fantasies…or would you? Some feel that your ability to cheat is directly tied to one’s own level of personal integrity and self-respect, as well as one’s commitment to their mate. But can a good person “slip?”
Infidelity can happen anywhere, at any time if you’re not careful, so here are some warning signs – along with behaviors to avoid – to prevent yourself from falling into an “accidental affair.”
Crossing the “Friend” Zone
It’s totally okay to have friends of the opposite sex, but your mate should be your BEST friend – the one you share with and confide in. However, some men and women cross a delicate line when over-sharing with friends of the opposite sex. You may have a fight with your mate and air your dirty laundry to your friend, only for him or her to encourage your complaints if they have a crush on you. Next thing you know, you’re doing more than crying on a shoulder. Some men and women keep their friends of the opposite sex a secret from their partner because they’re sharing private thoughts and experiences with them that they should be sharing at home. Make sure you keep your friends out of your relationship and that you keep the closeness with your partner, or else you could find yourself in a sticky situation.
When you two first meet, everything is exciting, shiny and new. You can’t keep your hands off of each other, you’re joined at the hip, and it’s all hugs and kisses. Then just like that, the honeymoon stage is over. Poof…gone. Then boredom sets in, and this is when you need to be careful. Studies show that infidelity usually happens within the first two years of marriage (or a long term relationship), so thoughts of experimenting should be the wake-up call you need to try and find new ways to wake up your sleeping relationship. Spice things up by trying new tricks in the bedroom, or simply have more date nights. Put the kids to bed early so that you can cuddle or talk about what’s going on in each other’s lives. Finding time to connect on a daily basis could be all you need to keep boredom from sneaking in and keep thoughts of cheating out.
Surrounding Yourself With Cheaters
You know what they say, birds of a feather flock together. And while you may have never cheated on a boyfriend or girlfriend in your life, befriending and hanging out with people who don’t hold marriage or monogamy to a high standard could have you thinking that you can get away with it too. However, if you have friends who hold the same belief system that you do, they may be the ones to guide you through a rough patch by NOT encouraging you to cheat. Philandering friends might tell you to “get a little on the side” if you’re unhappy at home, and constantly having people in your ear who don’t value your relationship may cause you to have a lapse in judgment. Keep friends/couples close that you admire and use them as a model for how you’d like your relationship to be. If you don’t have any good examples, BE the example for yourself…and find new friends.
Most people find themselves in situations they’d never otherwise be in if they weren’t under the influence of drugs or alcohol. You may have zero thoughts of cheating, but one night a stranger may decide to hit on you after you’ve had a little too much to drink and BAM! You’re hot and heavy with someone whose name you don’t even know. That may sound adolescent, but it can happen. I’ve seen men and women making out with strangers on the dance floor while out with friends and not remembering it at all the next day – simply because they don’t know when to say when. Drinking can, and most times WILL, cloud your judgment while releasing your inhibitions – leading to poor impulse control. If you have an addiction of any kind, it’s best to seek help so that you don’t hurt your relationship in any way.
It’s What Men Do
Not all men were raised to believe that they should spread their seed and populate the Earth, but an overwhelming majority of men believe that monogamy is unnatural. I’m not saying that women don’t believe this as well, but most women weren’t raised to believe that they should conquer every man they come in contact with. Even if a man is happy in his relationship, there is a chance he may cheat simply because he was raised with the thought that being with one woman goes against nature, therefore a “good” guy may stray just because…even if it’s inconsistent with his value system. As crazy as it sounds, this may be his way of “normalizing” his relationship. Men and women should realize that monogamy is a choice that comes with maturity; and that while you will always be attracted to people outside of your relationship, you don’t ever have to act on it.
Grass Looks Greener
Speaking of being attracted to someone other than your partner, it’s natural, and it doesn’t mean that there is something wrong with your partner, your relationship or that the other person is a better catch. Everyone else always looks good under the guise of chemistry, lust and fantasy – especially when they’re not bogging you down with bills, kids, chores and day-to-day life. You may even bump into an ex and they look better than you remember them looking when you broke up. But it’s all an illusion. Most times, men and women cheat, not only because there’s chemistry and opportunity, but also because they feel flattered and excited that someone other than their partner finds them attractive. Once the fantasy wears off and real life sets in, that other person suddenly isn’t as exciting and attractive as you thought they were. Remembering and nurturing the reason why you fell in love with your partner in the first place can help you avoid the cheating pitfall – so wiggle your toes in your own grass.