Are Cheaters Repeaters?
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Signs of Straying
So what are the signs that he might stray again? How can you tell if he really means it? There are a few red flags. Watch for them, and you might save yourself a lifetime of frustration.
- Is he willing to go into counseling?
More to the point, is he forthcoming in counseling? Will he talk about why he strayed, and work with you to find a compromise or a solution? "If someone ends the affair, but doesn't address the issue that they used the affair to handle, the possibility of straying again is greater," says Berger. He's got to work with you, not just promise it won't happen again. If not? Strike one.
- Was the cheating for love or sex?
"An emotional affair is more risky and damaging to your relationship than a fling," says Berger. "Much more so." If he was deeply involved, and that intense connection was interrupted, there's no way he's going to be able to give it up. "They're going to get in touch again," says Block. "There's bound to be a follow-up if the connection was intense and the breakup left them wanting more."
- Did he confess?
People who express remorse, realize they screwed up, and feel horrible -- really feel horrible, not act like someone who feels horrible -- are more likely to change. "If the person who has the affair realizes 'something's wrong here, this isn't the way I usually behave, I have to deal with why I did this' -- that can be the thing that saves the marriage," says Berger.
- Is there a pattern?
If your guy didn't do this once, but over and over and over again, the chance for change is small. The question isn't will he do it again; it's can you live with not knowing, and do you really care if he does. Perhaps you don't.