10 Common Personality Traits of a Cheater
What causes a man to cheat on the woman he claims to love? Is he most likely just a selfish, self-absorbed jerk, or is there a certain element of "dysfunction" lurking beneath his deceptive ways?
Most of the research on cheating suggests that there is a common set of personality traits that set cheaters apart from their non-philandering counter-parts. The sooner you are able to recognize these traits, the closer you will be to protecting yourself from a cheaters selfish ways.
Qualities typically found in cheaters:
1. Cheaters are often narcissists - most often cheaters are narcissists or at the very least they exhibit many similar qualities of a narcissistic personality; they are selfish and greedy and often think only of themselves. A narcissist typically feels a sense of entitlement and will do whatever necessary to feed the "narcissistic supply." Wikipedia defines “narcissistic supply” as “a concept in some psychoanalytic theories, which describes a type of admiration, interpersonal support or sustenance drawn by an individual from his or her environment (especially from careers, codependents and others). The term is typically used in a negative sense, describing a pathological or excessive need for attention or admiration that does not take into account the feelings, opinions or preferences of other people.” In short, narcissists are self absorbed, out for number one and they lack empathy, which makes it possible for them to take on affair partners and not feel any guilt about doing so.
2. Cheaters are very good liars - a cheater can look you directly in the eyes and tell a lie without even blinking. They have been known to tell tall tales that are so outrageous that you can’t help but believe them. We tend to believe them because they have perfected the lie to make it sound completely convincing. Many cheaters live such a life of deception that there is no line of where truth ends and lies begin. They have to lie every day to get away with what they are doing so they become very skilled at lying. Not all liars are cheaters, but you can’t be a cheater and not be a liar, the two go hand in hand.
4. Never Satisfied
3. Cheaters are typically very jealous - a person who cheats is constantly questioning you and frequently accusing you of inappropriate behavior or being flirtatious. The very fact that they are capable of being unfaithful puts them on the defensive and paranoia sets in. If they are doing it, they assume their partner must be doing it also. They are so deep into their life of lies and deception that insecurity sets in and they begin to accuse you of not only cheating, but lying, flirting etc. The best piece of advice I can give you is to listen carefully to what your suspected cheating partner is saying and remember this word: Projecting! Projecting, projecting, projecting…got it? If the are accusing you of crazy, uncalled for behaviors chances are they are the one committing the crime. Example: “You were late last night, you’re probably screwing around with your co-worker”. Projecting… "I am late sometimes because I’m screwing around". If you are tuned in to your cheating spouses behavior you can pretty much figure out what they are up to just by listening to what their accusations are.
4. It’s never enough - a common trait among cheaters is their constant need for more; more money, more attention, more recognition etc; cheaters are typically never happy or satisfied. They need constant attention and frequent ego boosts. They are always looking for that next hobby or activity to satisfy their needs, yet they are never happy no matter what they have in their lives. You can give and give but they always need more. They need to be the center of attention, they need to feel needed and wanted always. This is often very evident in the next trait.
5. Flirts - cheaters are most often but not always huge flirts. They need validation from the opposite sex and they need to feel desired by the opposite sex. They often see any flirtatious exchange no matter how small, as an invitation for more. Ironically, it's not so much that they have huge egos, as it is that they lack self-esteem. Many times they will flirt in front of you as if it's harmless fun. They think that if we see it with our own eyes that we will believe that it will never happen behind our backs. "Yes, he's a huge flirt but he always flirts with me there so it's harmless." Flirting is disrespectful under any circumstance and should always put up a huge red flag- period!
6. Emotional skeletons - the only truly sad part of a cheaters personality is that they often have emotional scars from their past. Many people who cheat were emotionally abused as children, ignored; or love and attention may have been withheld or it’s possible that their own role models were in messed up relationships. Cheaters often have a huge amount of emotional dependency on their spouses or partners. The very thing they desire is the thing that causes them to cheat in the first place. The fear of being alone is so huge that they need a back up plan; they need to know that someone is always available for them. Often times you may feel that your spouses emotionally dependency on you is so high that they would never risk losing you by having an affair. But the catch here is that their insecurity is so strong that they need to seek out extra-marital affairs to ensure that they never feel alone or insignificant.
7. Thrill seeking
7. Thrill seekers - cheaters are sometimes risk takers or thrill seekers in other areas of their lives as well. It all boils down to that “rush” they feel when there is risk involved. With cheating, it's often the lies and fear of getting caught that actually fuels their fire. They just can't seem to resist the thrill of the chase and when the opportunity for reciprocation arrives they can’t seem to resist that either. It’s a win-win with no regard for the risks involved.
8. A History of Infidelity
8. Past cheating - if your partner has confessed to cheating in past relationships you need to pay close attention, it is a huge indication to the extent of their moral code. If they have admitted to being unfaithful in previous relationships then they have pretty much confirmed that it's a line they have no problem crossing. Please don't buy into the excuses they will give for their past cheating. It doesn't matter if "she was a bitch" or "it was already over". It's still cheating and extremely disrespectful... over or not, unhappy or not; people deserve a better ending than being cheated on. Is once a cheater always a cheater? Often times the answer is unfortunately yes! ( I do recognize that once in a blue moon someone may cheat and it truly was a huge mistake and that they can learn from it and grow.)
9. Family History of Infidelity
9. Upbringing - cheaters often grew up in families were cheating occurred or a parent was disrespected in some other way. I'm not saying that cheating is genetic, just pointing out that if a person grew up in a cheating or otherwise disrespectful environment, then this behavior is all they know or have to model their own behavior after, making them a little more inclined to believe that cheating is a normal, acceptable behavior.
10. Disrespects His Mother
10. How he treats his Mother- you can gain a lot of information about a man by the way he treats his mother, and by the way he carries himself in her presence. If a man shows little respect for his mother, he most likely has little respect for women in general making him more likely to cross that line into infidelity. On the contrary, if he holds his mother and women in high regard and appreciates them as valuable creatures deserving respect he is less likely to cheat.
These are just some of the most common traits cheaters share. In summary, just be aware of the signs and don't make excuses for poor behaviour. Being disrespected by a man is never acceptable and it is often an indication of bigger problems in a relationship. Cheating, lying, flirting, verbal and emotional abuse are all things that should never be over-looked or tolerated. If you don't stand for something you will fall for anything, be strong and demand respect from your partner. You don't have to live that way.
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