Dealing with Once a Cheater, Always a Cheater

Once a Cheater
Once a Cheater, Always A Cheater
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Once a Cheater, Always a cheater? True Or Not True

Everyone has heard that a man who was once a cheater is always a cheater and once is likely to cheat again, but is this really the case?
Our new boyfriend is funny, sweet, charming, dependable, and always plans the best dates, so things are going remarkably well. We get along great and can’t think of anything that would ever cause us to want to end our relationship with him – until we learn something about his past: he has cheated.

This fresh information can feel like a gut punch. Every time we hear the proverb “Once a cheater, always a cheater,” we start to doubt whether we can really trust him to remain faithful. What makes you think he cares about me if he’s done something so horrible to someone else? So are these questions that we have valid? Is it true that a person who cheats once will always cheat?

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The response is “Yes and No”

Depending on whether we expect our relationship will work or we’re seeking an out, it can be tempting to either fully prove or completely refute this theory. Unfortunately, the science doesn’t clearly support either position.


There are serial cheaters, and studies have shown that people who have cheated in the past are more likely to do so again than people who have never cheated. However, having an affair once doesn’t guarantee that you’ll have one again. When attempting to anticipate someone’s future behavior, there are more factors to consider. It is more likely for someone who has cheated in the past than for someone who has not, but it is not a given.


This could make us feel even more uneasy. If we could at least be certain that he would cheat on us someday, we could decide to call it quits right away. However, we cannot be certain of this, making it all the more crucial to pay attention to how our boyfriend acts right now rather than in the past.


How can we predict if he will cheat once more?

The fact that you cheated in a previous relationship is a warning sign that shouldn’t be discounted. We can’t simply assume that he wouldn’t treat us the same way or put the full burden on his ex.

Even though we couldn’t be more dissimilar than the woman he cheated on, it makes no difference. Whether or if he is different in this situation is what matters most.


How someone feels about their cheating, how much responsibility they accept, and whether or not they are prepared to be honest about how dreadful and wrong their decision to be unfaithful was are the main distinctions between a serial cheater and someone who has cheated.


A man who will cheat again will blame his previous partners for his misdeeds, exhibit little regret for his past choices, tell lies about other matters, and be very secretive and possessive of his phone. He may mention in passing that he feels awful about lying, but we will sense that he does not feel ashamed.


A guy who won’t cheat on us, however, will be honest about his past affairs, acknowledge the reasons we might not trust him, show genuine remorse, accept responsibility for his actions, and acknowledge that his ex didn’t deserve it (even if she wasn’t perfect), explore the reasons behind his infidelity (if he’s in therapy, that’s even better), and express that he never intends to repeat that mistake. He’ll experience a healthy sense of shame for his choice and take concrete action to prevent hurting someone else in the future.

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If He Cheated On Us, Is It Wise To Stay?

But what if we don’t worry about him cheating on us in the future? What if he has done so already? Do we need to try him again? We love him deeply and have put so much into the relationship already; we just want things to return to how they were. But we still have a sneaking suspicion that bringing him back was a mistake, and we don’t want to be made fools of once more.


In this situation, the crucial question is whether or not he has changed.


Because no two relationships or circumstances are the same, this is a challenging issue to answer. But in every relationship, it’s feasible that our mutual trust will be completely lost, and a healthy partnership can’t exist without trust.


It’s up to us to decide whether or not to stay with a cheater. Some of us have a no-cheating policy and will call it quits once there has been infidelity, with no exceptions (which is completely understandable). Others ponder whether they can still manage despite this injury. But if we decide to stay, it’s crucial that we do it consciously, thoughtfully, and logically, rather than emotionally.

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The truth is that our boyfriend—or, in the worst-case scenario, our husband—violated our trust and treated us with contempt. We must be honest with ourselves about our capacity and willingness to get past this betrayal, and we must demonstrate the characteristics of someone who won’t betray us again. They must also be prepared to cooperate with us in order to restore the trust that has been lost. In many situations, seeking professional assistance from a couple’s counselor will prove beneficial as we move forward.


Final Thoughts

The final word? Being a cheater once does not automatically make you a cheater forever. However, there are warning indicators that we need to be aware of in order to determine whether or not our boyfriend or husband will continue to be unfaithful.


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