Sunday, February 16, 2014

The Cheaters and The Cheated



Before I even began to dive into this subject, I found several statistics related to cheating (infidelity) online. Keep in mind, these are percentages of only those who actually admitted to cheating. These stats don't include those who got away with it. 

Marriage Infidelity StatisticsData
Percent of marriages where one or both spouses admit to infidelity, either physical or emotional41 %
Percent of men who admit to committing infidelity in any relationship they’ve had57 %
Percentage of women who admit to committing infidelity in any relationship they’ve had54 %
Percent of married men who have strayed at least once during their married lives22 %
Percent of married women who have strayed at least once during their married lives14 %
Percentage of men and women who admit to having an affair with a co-worker36 %
Percentage of men and women who admit to infidelity on business trips35%
Percentage of men and women who admit to infidelity with a brother-in-law or sister-in-law17 %
Average length of an affair2 years
Percentage of marriages that last after an affair has been admitted to or discovered31 %
Percentage of men who say they would have an affair if they knew they would never get caught74 %
Percentage of women who say they would have an affair if they knew they would never get caught68 %
Percent of children who are the product of infidelity3 %

Wow! Right? I'm sure all of you reading this just decided to turn into overbearing psycho stalker spouses/significant others. Just kidding. Anyway, another crazy statistic that I found was that around 60% of people will be cheated on at least once in their lifetime. Awful, isn't it? So the two big things I want to focus on in this touchy blog are the cheaters and the cheated-on in relationships. If a section doesn't apply to you, simply don't read it.


The Cheaters

Even if you think this doesn't apply to you because you've never physically cheated, you may be wrong. In my mind, cheating isn't just physical, it's emotional. Emotional cheating is also pointed out in the bible. Matthew 5:28 says that if you look at a woman with a lustful intent, you've already committed adultery with her in your heart. If you're emotionally attached or thinking about someone else other than the one you're with, you aren't being faithful. Emotions are HUGE in a relationship, and trust me, people aren't stupid. They know when you're looking straight through them or wishing they were someone else. The human heart isn't a toy to be tinkered with. So, don't let someone allow you to consume their heart and mind if you don't plan on being there.. ALL there.

 One of the huge problems, in my opinion, are people who move from person to person after the current relationship gets boring. This type of person is someone who dates one person during the "googley eyed" stage, and moves onto the next relationship's googley-eyed stage when the current relationship starts getting too monotonous. Psychologists and other specialists are linking this incident to the multiple loves/sexual partners that people are getting used to before their first real commitment. This made sense to me, but I don't believe it applies in every case. However, I do believe people with multiple partners have a huge shock when they realize they've now committed to be with one person (sexually and emotionally) for the rest of their lives. 

Another excuse people use is that their significant other "changed" or "just isn't the same anymore." Uh, hello, of course they aren't the same. You're out of the giggly, interesting, super exciting beginning stage and you're needing something else to keep your attention. You feel as if you've gotten to know everything about them and there's nothing else to learn.. and you're bored. Trust me, there is ALWAYS more to learn about the love of your life. Always. I'm one of those people that notices and memorizes the stupid little details. If you date me, I'll know the exact toppings you prefer on your cheeseburger. I'll decide what type of driver you are the very first time I ride in your vehicle with you. I'll pay extremely close attention to how you treat your mother and your sisters, and if it isn't something I approve of, i'll run in the opposite direction. I pay attention to the cleanliness of your car, your room, and your body. I'll ask you your favorite books, songs, and movies. Most of all, I pay attention to what inspires you. I made a commitment to myself when I was 18, after the most disastrous relationship i've endured, that i'd never date someone I couldn't picture myself marrying. Make yourself this promise and your relationships will be more valuable to you.

 I'm one of those people who loves a chase. I eat it up. If you tell me I can't have something, I'm going to show you I can, in fact, have it. It isn't just me, it's human nature. This is another problem in relationships. You chase someone, get them, the relationship gets boring once again, and you notice someone else who seems unattainable. Annndddd there goes your attention. It's that easy. Train your mind. Love isn't about finding the perfect person, it's about learning to love and devote your life to the person you've found.

Not everyone is going to love you the exact way you want them to, but if they seem right for you, and you love them, don't hurt them. Just because someone doesn't love you the exact way you want them to, doesn't mean they don't love you with all they have. Cherish this. Protect their heart like it's the most valuable possession you've ever held in your hands. Don't shatter their heart and mind because you can't control yours.

Proverbs 6:32
"He who commits adultery lacks sense; he who does it destroys himself."

Hebrews 13:4
"Let marriage be held in honor among all, and let the marriage bed be undefiled, for God will judge the sexually immoral and adulterous."


The Cheated

I have to be extremely careful while touching on this subject. First of all, whether or not you choose to stay with your partner after an occurrence of infidelity is no one's business but your own. It all depends on the situation and what kind of person you are. According to surveys, most people say they leave after being cheated on because "they could never look at their spouse the same way again" or "couldn't forget that it happened." Completely understandable. Those who have stayed with their significant other after infidelity often report that their spouse exhibits feelings of remorse and promises to change and never do it again. Once again, this choice is entirely up to you, and shouldn't involve the input of anyone else. Keep in mind that those outside of your relationship may tell you things that are easier said than done. It's easy for us to tell someone to leave their significant other after infidelity, but who are we to say such things? YOU are the one who married them. YOU are the one who loves them. It's no one's choice but YOURS to make. So, choosing to stay or choosing to leave is the first part of the process. Leaving may seem quick and easy because you can pretend you're okay, mask the pain with hobbies and nights out with your friends, and it seems as if the problem has disappeared. However, if you leave your relationship, you'll be stuck with your pain and sorrow without the person you loved and depended on to help you sort it out. 

I've been cheated on several times. One verse that always helped ease my feelings of hopelessness and betrayal was Romans 5:3-5. "More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us."Rejoice in our sufferings.. much easier said than done. During hard times like these, it's easy to lose all self-confidence and self-worth, but you have to remember that you didn't cause this person to hurt you. There is something wrong with them, not you. There is no excuse for cheating. It is a selfish act caused by something in that person, not in you. I can't stress that enough.

When someone hurts me, betrays me, or cheats on me, I like to think of it as an opportunity to make myself stronger than i've ever been before. Remember when you were in middle school and those girls or guys would pick on you or leave you out.. and your mom would tell you to get a "thicker skin?" I never understood that phrase until I was cheated on for the first time. Each time someone hurt me, I rejoiced. I'm not going to lie, my first reaction was anger and hatred. I hated them with every part of me. I spent minutes, hours, days, weeks, and even months wondering how they could do such a thing. I mostly thought about how I could retaliate, because I wanted them to hurt. I wanted them to feel the pain and suffering that they caused me (awful, isn't it?!). However, over time (A LOT of time), i've learned to thank them for making me stronger in the end. If you rejoice in your sufferings, you'll gain endurance, character, and hope. So, the next time you want to slash your ex's tires or throw all of their belongings into the middle of I-10, choose to thank them for giving you endurance, character, and hope. You WILL make it through this, and you'll come out stronger than you've ever been before. Pray. Pray for the person who hurt you, and pray for yourself. 

Psalm 34:18
"The Lord is close to the brokenhearted, and saves those who are crushed in spirit."

XOXO,
Hope Gabrielle

5 comments:

  1. Thanks so much for this post!! You don't understand how much it is perfect timing! :)

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    1. Thank you for reading! Glad you enjoyed it :)

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  2. Great post! I suddenly remember my post about cheaters: “A cheater will always be a cheater” – FACT or MYTH?

    It's not the same as your post. But I'm somehow enlightened about the whole "Infidelity" stuff.

    Thanks for the share :) #RememberanInspiringOcean

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    1. Thank you so much for reading! I apologize for just now getting back with you. I will take a look at yours as well :)

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