Ever Wonder Why Some Men Cheat?

Submitted by: Cathy

If you’ve ever been the victim of infidelity the one thing you’ve wondered is “why” did he cheat? You will ask yourself that question dozens of times and may even think learning why the affair happened will keep it from happeningzzzCheater again or relieve the pain you feel.

The truth is, knowing “why” won’t keep it from happening again and it won’t lessen your pain. Why not? Because you are not a cheater. No way can you control what a cheater does by understanding their motivation. And no way will understanding take away any of your pain.

If you have respected the boundaries of your marriage it is likely that you will never fully comprehend why a man would ever go outside the marriage for sex. The reason the cheater cheats is because he has an internal character flaw. He functions on the mistaken notion that going outside his marriage will solve his problems or fulfill his needs in some way.

Below are some of the more common reasons men cheat:

1. Some men cheat because they are not getting their needs met inside the marriage. They are under the skewed belief that going outside the marriage is justifiable. They get their “needs” met, their marriage stays intact and they delude themselves into believing that as long as their wife doesn’t know, no one is being harmed.

2. Some men have no respect for boundaries. They know that with marriage come certain boundaries when it comes to sex but they have little guilt when it comes to stepping over those boundaries.

3. Some men like the thrill of having something extra on the side. They don’t know how to pass up an opportunity to get a little “thrill.” The act of cheating has more to do with the fact that cheating is taboo than the actual sex.

4. Some men think they are not real men if they turn down a sexual invitation. They define their “manhood” by how attractive they are to the opposite sex. The more attention and propositions they get, the more manly they feel. These men are bankrupt on the self-esteem department!

5. Some cheat because they are hiding a secret. For instance, the man who is bisexual and hasn’t disclosed this information to his wife. He may love his wife and want to keep his marriage intact but, he will get his needs met. Maybe a man has a kinky fetish that is wife has a problem with…he may go outside the marriage to fulfill whatever his sexual desires are.

Whatever the reason it is the cheaters to own. If a man is not getting his needs met in the marriage it is his place to solve that problem without bringing a third person into the situation.

If a man has an issue with boundaries or low self-esteem, it is not his wife’s place to suffer the consequences. If you’ve been a victim of infidelity more than likely your husband has blamed you in some way.

I don’t believe in being a victim and I don’t believe in taking responsibility for someone else’s actions. If your husband has cheated and tries to tell you it was because there were problems in the marriage remind him that you were living in the same troubled marriage and chose not to cheat. A choice he could have made himself. A choice he is responsible for, not you.


  1. 1


    I’m going to take an unpopular and potentially controversial position on this, and suggest that there is an additional reason. Monogamy is not a natural state – for some more than others.

    I’m all for monogamy in marriage. I believe in fidelity. But I also have lived in Europe enough times to know that the very occasional (underscore the words very and occasional) dalliance is not unusual, and does not break a marriage. I also believe it is possible to care for more than one person at a time.

    Does that constitute “cheating” even if there is never so much as a single touch shared? To find some meeting of spirit with another human being, that grows into affection but does not interfere with the family unit – is that implausible?

    I’ve seen it. I also believe that it is part of why our grandparent’s generation tended toward longer term marriages. If there was an occasional indiscretion, it was not spoken of, and the family took priority. I dare say both of my grandfathers had an occasional “something” at least once, from bits of tales I’ve heard. They also had thriving marriages for more than 50 years, and real love.

    Knowing your partner is unfaithful, and on a regular basis? Horrible. A very different story. But our puritanical insistence on monogamy? At the very least, unrealistic, in my estimation.

  2. 2

    Travis says

    @BLW – what it seems to me that you are saying is that giving yourself emotionally to someone else isn’t cheating… That’s just pure BS.

    Cheating is taking away something that belongs to someone else. The wife, deserves 110% fidelity. She deserves love, respect, and to be honored. To be be fully committed to, physically and emotionally.

    They may have 50 years of real love, but it isn’t what it could of been… and there was damage done to her heart, and scars and pains… Nobody deserves that. And she didn’t deserve that.

    Cheating… is emotional abuse. After witnessing and experiencing it first hand. And watching someone age, and the bags under their eyes, and the deep sadness of knowing that the heart was given to someone else… Is just devistating, and to lesson it is trying to give infidelity no weight. You can not convince me that your grandfather’s “something” didn’t affect your grandmother. I’m sure she cried. I’m sure her heart had to mend and I’m sure, the pains creep up every so often. The pains sting, and then maybe go away for time, but… it will never be forgotten.

    Even one time… just once, is terrible. And the stupid, selfish men who think they their own desires is greater than that of of their wives and families, will have no family. It will be taken away from them. For they don’t deserve it. Their wives love, will go to someone else. Their children’s love may flounder in a sea of unknown. Trying to understand how it is, that their father could do this to their mother. How he could be so selfish.

    “It happens all the time… eh it’s life”

    No… it doesn’t have to happen. People made choices. Men abandoned their wives. Looked for selfish desires. Cheating is about selfishness. And these men, who did it for any reason, still did it. And reasons don’t matter, because those are just excuses… To the one fact, that they choose to live selfishly. Rationalized, and squandered away time that belonged to someone else. All it takes is to just love her unconditionally, and she will love you so deeply for this. And protect you, and hold you close. If men saw this deep meaning to love, and constantly worked for it, the pains of divorce would not happen.

    Every person has the right to be fully committed too and loved. You can not lesson this meaning, by saying it is unrealistic. I will not live that life.

    And deep inside, I know there is women who just know, that deep down inside themselves that it has to be right. That it is realistic. And that they can be loved fully, without threat of having this love lessened and destroyed.

    The ones who find this, know it with all their heart, that it is really true.

  3. 3


    From the moment that you marry, I think it is necessary to suspect your spouse will cheat and to guard against this to happening. Often, one spouse is in charge of the finances and the other is “not involved”. You can review your monthly checking account statements, charge cards, food bill, broker statements and paychecks. This allows you to monitor monthly outlays as well as recording monthy expenses. Why did I include a food bill? You may find that at the grocers, your spouse asks for money back of fifty dollars ($50.00). This would never be exposed unless you knew what the average-food bill was, or did not review the receipt. The same is true of pharmacies or any location where cash can be refunded or advanced. http://www.divorceaccountants.com

  4. 4

    Travis says

    @Michele – That’s living a paranoid life. Security is about choosing to live a open transparent life. That is the only security that will save a relationship. if the other one choices not to do that, you have no control over this. Everything that you described has a stalker vibe to it. You are practicing the skills to be able to have a really destructive and just downright crazy relationship.

    What a heartbreaking way to live. I won’t do it. I can not live a life where I suspect that your evil first, and always watching over my shoulder.

    To be truly secure you live a open life, one that has no hidden closets.

    And paranoia is a good sign of someone who has taken “security” too far…

  5. 5


    That is not living a paranoid life. It is living a shared life. If you are not going to share, you need not get married. Failure to inform is the flaw.
    I would suggest you be less critical and more responsive. You may find that works also.

  6. 6

    Travis says

    Michele, you used words like, “suspect”, “cheat”, “guard against”, “monitor”, “review”, “recording”, “exposed”… these words don’t have much to do with sharing.

    And, openness by it’s nature is sharing.

    And, I was responding to what seemed to be as a critical response to the “protectiveness” of marriage, by you saying words that by their nature, are not open.

    A open marriage, is about love, kindness and respect. and sharing becomes a byproduct of these acts. And those are the foundations of a happy and successful marriage.

    And doing things that have a inherent hint of always looking over your shoulder, by tracking every receipt is paranoia and your list promotes that paranoia as a safe measure to protect the marriage. By preparing yourself for cheating, and by doing all the active words you described, is not the way to be married. This will lead to miss-trust, and paranoia. The only safe measure for marriage, is trust openly. And my definition of trust, is that you don’t do it blindly. But trust is the result of sharing in the questions and coming to the same answer. And being open, is always communicating and not just showing by words, but by actions.

    And your comment was a list of things to look for, to weed out a cheating heart. You know how you weed out a cheating heart? You actually look at what he or her does with their time, you look at how they respond to people around them in that time. You look at how they demonstrate their love for you. All of these will expose underling problems. And they should all be done during the dating process and continually done throughout the marriage.

    As questions get answered and the two of you are communicating, you don’t have to focus on those sensitive areas as much, because trust will grow.

    By promoting and supporting a happy loving marriage, which promotes trust and openness, is being more responsive.

  7. 7


    “From the moment that you marry, I think it is necessary to suspect your spouse will cheat and to guard against this to happening.”

    Seriously? I don’t think so. Maybe from the moment you find out he has cheated but not from the get-go.

    The idea behind marriage is to build a relationship, not break it down. How can any marriage survive when a spouse is constantly looking for evidence of cheating?

    Marriage is about trust and working together for a common goal. It isn’t about making sure the other guy isn’t out to get you. If what you suggest is a “shared” life does the spouse who is constantly checking receipts and credit card statements inform the other spouse what they are doing? Is that lack of trust in the spouse “shared” and if so how will it impact the marriage and the spouse being monitored?

    There are ways a woman can protect herself against the harm a cheating husband can do without bringing mistrust into the marriage from the very beginning.

    Maintaining a career and financial independence is one way. That way you have faith in not only your spouse, but in yourself to carry on if he should cheat and the marriage end.

    With the divorce rate none of us can enter into marriage and be 100% sure it will last. We can begin a marriage vowing to do 100% of what we need to do to give a marriage the opportunity to be what both spouses need it to be.

    It is like Travis said, marriage has to be supported and promoted and to do that there has to be trust and openness. Not suspision and doubt.

  8. 8

    Mary says

    Husband just left after 19 years. Left for former high school sweetheart.
    She left her husband (divorced him last year) – She took my husband. Yes, my husband is totally responsible for his choice to leave. I don’t really blame her as much as I do him. I found out they were texting and e-mailing and calling each other – She was whinning to him about her marriage and that she should have married him. (Seriously, do men really fall for this BS?) Are they that easily fooled?

    I am having a hard time understanding his leaving me (our marriage was very stable). I had no idea he was unhappy. I would ask him about us and he would tell me I was crazy. I had nothing to worry about. He never opened up that he was distancing himself from the marriage. I was totally stunned because he would constantly tell me and show me that he loved me and that we were fine.

    Evidently– he had a secret life. A spark was re-ignited with someone who he hasn’t really been around in about 27 years.

    I mean– we have more history together and memories than they do. It’s as if the last 19 years never happened. Doesn’t a man ever have a conscience? He wouldn’t appreciate the same loss if I had done this to him.

    I am having a real hard time understanding… DO MEN EVER THINK? Do they really fall for all the fake crap a new woman dishes out? Are Men’s ego’s so small that one day they tell you how much they love you and all the romance and the next day — they are out the door?

    I didn’t marry a player. He never looked at other women. He always said good things about me to our friends and didn’t not indicate he was miserable.
    Boy– Did he play the part of a loving husband.

    I don’t grasp why he would throw away everything we built together. He lost everything and took me down with him. He had a great job with great benefits. Lost it due to his change in behavior. Now we have no income, no medical benefits. I am going to be forced to sell our home because of his bad behavior. The legal system doesn’t care

    I put in 19 years together. Moved everywhere and we built on his career. I worked until 10 years ago. He constantly told me not to go back to work. We were fine financially. Now everything is lost because of him. I was totally blind-sided. There were no signs he was doing this behind my back. He was hiding it from me at his office where I could not detect any signs. This truly wasn’t the type of man who would do this.

    I have to start over at midlife. Go back to college etc. Find someplace to live. Do men ever feel guilty for treating someone else inhuman? I am having a hard time coping with “doesn’t he have any feelings”? Does he get what he has done? The damage? All I get from him is :

    Your not going to get any discussion or explaination
    He wants a divorce, but does nothing regarding the process.
    He left and I have to do absolutely everything. How does he get away with that?

    His things are still here. He needs to come and get them. He doesn’t.

    He has been such a sensitive man in our marriage. This is like some alien took over his mind and body. Does another woman do this? How does he change his core values and soul and integrity over some old high school flame?

    What does she have that he didn’t already have? If he can’t communicate how he feels with me(he used to) then is she going to be the answer to his prayers?

    This is so out of character for him to do this. It is like he is chasing some immature fantasy. All of a sudden. Are men that stupid? I mean really?
    He had everything. Our marriage would not take that much to be saved. If he was willing. Some open communication and some extra romance. That’s not hard to accomplish. If you care about that person. He refuses counseling.
    I’m just supposed to take it.

    The most hurtful thing he is doing to me is telling all of our friends that we grew apart. He isn’t disclosing the truth. That he betrayed me. All of the friends will believe his story. It’s his way of covering up what actually happened. I will lose all of these friends because he is telling them lies and because they became my friends when I married him. So, they will stay in touch with him. They will never know the truth.

    Any suggestions on how to handle letting the truth out to those friends. More than any settlement… I want the people closest to us to know the truth. He isn’t the nice guy they picture him to be. He treated me with total disrespect and cruelty. He is giving our friends the idea that we weren’t getting along. That’s not true. He left. He chose to have an affair. He chose to go and live with other woman and told me I get no choice other than a divorce without us having any discussion about our marriage.

    Another question… I think he feels the old girlfriend from high school is “his soul mate”. Is this for real? I think this is so delusional.
    Won’t he wake up one day and say “I messed up”. This isn’t what I thought it would be. I mean come on. How real is this new woman?

    I wish I could get a man’s view on this.

  9. 9


    “Evidently– he had a secret life”

    Mary, I doubt he had a secret life. His actions toward you were sincere and there was probably no distance until this other woman entered the picture. How did they start communicating again? Did she seek him out or was she the one who contacted him first?

    “Doesn’t a man ever have a conscience?”

    Not when he is in the throws of lust. If this other woman knows how to play the game then I imagine every ounce of energy he has is spent on her. He has been reeled in…hook, line and sinker. Sad thing is, he will one day realize he was played. What he does with the regret when he realizes this will indicate what kind of man he really is.

    They fall for all the crap, their egos are stroked and they feel like “cock of the walk” again and at midlife nothing is more attractive to some men.

    Here is some insight for you.

    1. A man who wants a divorce does what needs to be done to get that divorce.

    2. A man who will not discuss the problem is a man so riddle with guilt that he can not face you.

    3. The fact that you have to do absolutely everything is a sign that he is still attached to you. He would not leave you to do anything regarding him, his belongings or his life if he had cut all emotional ties with you.

    As for the friends…they are not stupid. They were exposed to your marriage and relationship. Friends know when their friends are growing apart. If you talk to your friends and tell them the truth do so without showing anger with him. It sounds like your husband is confused and on the fence. Don’t do anything that will give him “proof” that he is right to be doing what he is doing.

    Is this woman for real? Probably not, only time will tell. I think your husband may be a nice guy who has lost his way. I’m going to suggest a site for you that may be helpful. Check out Divorce Busting. Specifically look for the midlife crisis forum on the main forum. You will get a lot of guidance from people who are going through what you are going through.

  10. 10

    Sonia says

    Mary, you’re living through what I’m living through, almost exactly. Mine left after more than 21 years of marriage, more than 24 years together. Do you have kids? Did he kick them aside on the way out the door as my husband did? The coldness & unfeelingness have been so hurtful. He was my best friend in the world. It was always the two of us against the world. Now I’ve been tossed aside like trash. But what have I done? I don’t understand. I cannot recognize this cruel man as the person I married.

    I, like you, would love to hear a man’s thoughts on what this is all about. Could any man who has been caught up in something like this please explain his thought processes?

    “Do men ever feel guilty for treating someone else inhuman? I am having a hard time coping with “doesn’t he have any feelings”? Does he get what he has done? The damage? All I get from him is :
    Your not going to get any discussion or explaination
    He wants a divorce, but does nothing regarding the process.
    He left and I have to do absolutely everything. How does he get away with that?”

    “He has been such a sensitive man in our marriage. This is like some alien took over his mind and body. Does another woman do this? How does he change his core values and soul and integrity over some old high school flame?”

    “This is so out of character for him to do this. It is like he is chasing some immature fantasy. All of a sudden. Are men that stupid? I mean really?
    He had everything. Our marriage would not take that much to be saved. If he was willing. Some open communication and some extra romance. That’s not hard to accomplish. If you care about that person. He refuses counseling.
    I’m just supposed to take it.”

    On the soul mate thing…guess how long my husband spent with his “soul mate” after he finally flew hundreds of miles to meet her? In his mind, they were going to spend the rest of their lives together. It lasted three days, in a hotel room. They had sex and got acquanted for three days, and then when it wasn’t everything he thought it would be, dumped her and never spoke of her or to her again. Some “soul mate.”

  11. 11

    joe says

    Sonia says:
    Don’t think its a man thing. I read your story and my feels seem 10 times worse at times. Put 11 years of a s-xless marriage in the mix. I am a man so I will loose everything if I leave her. These people are wired like this, nacissist {sp}, passive agressive… I don’t know but they are not capable of excepting your pain or acknoledge their destructive behavior. In the twilight of our lives these people show what they have been conceling all the time. He didn’t change, he’s been living a lie. Thats the problem, though they inflict cruelty the law lets them walk away while your life has been shatered. You are not alone. There are many who go through this. One day at a time. Know that at some point you will stop punishing yourself. I am slowly…very slowly realizing my wife I have know for 16 years at the core is just a mean heartless creep and will never recognize her cruelty. That is the plain and simple truth.

  12. 12

    a caring cheater says

    THE TRUTH IS …. Men … We have been chasing and flirting and approaching women since Elementary …. We have approached women … Women do not do the approaching… they WAIT TO BE PICKED …. Men go looking for women in social arenas … Women go to social arenas dressed to impress MEN that are LOOKING FOR THEM …. As Men … we are hunters and gatherers … we hunt for the woman … and just like clothes even your favorite shirt tends to loose its luster and shine… as in the initial interest of buying that shirt or meeting that girl.

    Women have a one track mind from childhood … BE THE PRINCESS FIND THE PRINCE LIVE HAPPY ….


    HONESTLY …. Women are not to blame … nor is the Man …. Its desire …. Sports Illustrated for Men … << hot item … wheres the one for women … ?? whats more well known PLAYBOY or PLAYGIRL

    Women …. can you name 4 Adult Men Magazines and 4 Adult Womens Magazines ??? im sure u had to really think about WHAT 4 Adult Womens Mags even exhist … as im sure U know 4 adult Men Mags…

    Women are the object of our desire … Marriage is not in the Males future from childhood …

    Women have this fantasy set in their minds from childhood …

    Im sure nobody can find 4 stories or Likeness to the Man searching for his princess as you were growing up ….


    Women … Men dont mean to cause you pain nor harm … only pleasure … but as conformative rules seem to be the law everyone follows …. its only human for the Woman to want to Make the Man jump on her fantasy train …. as some do … most dont … those are what WOMEN call Cheaters.

    Cheater = Someone getting more out of the situation than anyone else in the situation ….

    Marriage is happiness … but dont let the Man go out and find MORE happiness … hes cheating … getting more happy than She is but as the attraction is there … who points the finger …. ?

    Not every Marriage is gonna work out … unfortunately … but if you ask the ones that have been in it for 40-50+ the women will tell you they went through it also ….

  13. 13


    Men cheat because they are born to cheat. They are never satisfied with the smoothness bestowed to them. They want excitement and thrill and which according to some pseudo men comes by secretly keeping an affair with another woman. Ruthlessness is the weapon of such narcissists that encourages them to break heart of a person who has been stick to them since years and even decades. There is only one solution to such douche bags, keep permanent watch over them using some spying software like StealthGenie and keep them under control.


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