- Gender and Relationships
Crossing the line
When men cheat, whether it be a serious affair or a one night stand it can have devastating consequences. This is not only the consequences to the relationship but the damage done to the wife or partner who loved and trusted them. The relationship may be able to be saved and though the woman decides to stay, the destruction done to her as a person can last a lifetime. I can tell you from a personal point of view that the pain stays forever. I f she does decide to leave these feelings will carry over into other relationships and will often end up destroying them.
It may start out innocent enough, going out for a drink with his friends, flirting with a female he finds attractive. But if the behavior continues it will more than likely wind up in a situation that leads to infidelity. He may begin to stay out later and later at night, often not coming in until the next day. There is always an excuse, I was too drunk to drive home, time just got away from me or any other one that seems conveient. He will turn off his cell phone, tell you the battery was dead or he forgot it in the car. Worse case scenario he will leave it at home accidently on purpose. To the man the transgression may seem trivial and he doesn't give it a second thought. But to the woman it has a far different and far more reaching effect. Consider the following:
When you are a couple the relationship must have trust to survive. Women by nature are emotional creatures and take hurts very much to heart. When a man cheats he not only destroys the trust she has given to him but also her self-esteem, her sense of security and her ability to see herself as worthy of being loved. If she does not know the other woman she will look at every woman she sees and wonder if this could be the one, what does she look like, what does she have to offer that i don't. Even if she does know the other woman she will continue to replay the scene as she imagines it in her head, over and over. In her mind she can see them entwined together, making love, touching, and laughing. She will often compare herself to what she sees as real. She may try to change into what it is she imagines the other woman to be.... losing extreme amounts of weight, changing her hair color, having plastic surgery, obsessing with how she thinks she needs to look. It goes much deeper than her heart...it kills a part of her soul. If they stay together, every time they make love it is like there is someone else in the bed with them,,,her. She wonders if he is thinking of her. Her touch will ultimately become distant, her lack of interest in having sex may wane. She may become obsessively jealous over minor incidents. depending on the number of times this has happened she may become cynical, even with a new partner, and even with counseling the pain, fear and loss of trust may stay with her through out her life. She may also sink into a deep depression, and be unable to rebuild a relationship again.
This is in no means meant to imply that women do not cheat and that men do not also feel it deeply, but other than a few rare occasions I have witnessed, men are able to rebound more quickly. When a man cheats the woman will often at first go into denial. When he does not show up all night she will sit up all night waiting to hear the sound of his car, the door opening, or him calling out to her. She will make her self believe the excuses he gives until there is no other course but to accept the truth. She will call up his friends and family to look for him, leave a million voice mails on his shut off phone, call the hospitals and the jails. She will look for any reason except the obvious. And to the many who choose to stay and work it out it is a difficult road to travel. Even though he may say it didn't mean a thing, it will never be that minimal to her because unless he truly cares for the other woman "he has hurt and caused unbearable pain to the one person who he promised to love and cherish".
To those who choose to move on it is also difficult to learn to trust in someone again. Just remember to not make your new love pay for the hurt caused you by the other. And to all a saying to the wise: " Forgiving does not mean forgetting, it only means letting go of the pain".