Almost every person who has been through infidelity is exposed to the following myths. You probably heard it from people around you or read it somewhere. No matter where they come from, when you’re in the aftermath of infidelity you want to avoid infidelity myths as much as possible. They have the potential to push you to more confusion and devastation.
If I had a penny for every time I heard infidelity myths… Myths (and infidelity myths are included) come from somewhere. They usually come from an experience that is generalized to fit all. It makes it so much easier to understand the world and people through myths of good and bad. The problem is that the world and people are far more complex and nuanced. Let’s see things from a different perspective. One that is more realistic and makes sense when it comes to couples’ relationships and infidelity.
Infidelity Myth No.1
Once a cheater always a cheater.
I think this infidelity myth is probably the most prevalent one of all. Wondering where this is coming from, I found that it really isn’t someone’s invention. It’s actually in some books and articles (not the ones I’d recommend, of course). These books and articles suggest that the reason people cheat is because of a fundamental problem of the unfaithful person. Personality disorders, sex addiction, or a childhood wound are usually the ones people refer to. While this can be true in some cases, it is absolutely not the case in most instances. But, for some reason, we adopted the idea that cheating is a sickness. Therefore, if you have it, you will forever do it.
Today we know that infidelity happens in 1 in every 2.7 couples (some say even more). It would make no sense to assume that so many people are sick. Therefore, it is more probable that your betraying partner is not one of the approximately 2% who have a personality disorder or other disorder. If your partner is diagnosed with one, than this may not apply to you.
Infidelity Myth No.2
You’ll never be able to trust him/her again.
I hear this so often from the betrayed partners and rightfully so. When your partner betrays your trust, you wonder if you’ll ever be able to trust them again. Some say that time will do its healing, while others say that trust building efforts will do the trick. I would add one more component to the mix: trust building efforts + time + letting go of the blind trust.
Letting go of the blind trust? You probably wonder what I’m talking about.
When a couple is in a relationship that is built on trust, among other things, they have what I call blind trust. It’s the innocent carefree trust that your partner will do the right thing by you. The trust that he/she will not cheat on you with someone else. It allows you to go about your day without worrying, feeling jealous, wondering, etc. Now, when your trust is broken by infidelity, you lose this type of trust and that usually crushes you. Just the thought of not being able to blindly trust your spouse ever again seems like an impossible task. This may lead you to conclude you will not be able to stay in this relationship.
This is where the other type of trust comes in – the open-eyed trust. If you’re able to live with the loss of blind trust, and welcome the open-eyed trust, it’ll be easier to heal. Open-eyed trust is more suitable in situations where people were betrayed. We tend to look twice and be more alert after someone betrays our trust.
Infidelity Myth No.3
Partners who cheat fell out of love and want out of the relationship.
Actually, most partners who engaged in infidelity want to stay in their relationship. My guess is that if someone wanted out, they would either leave (divorce is always an option), or they would not want to work on the relationship after the infidelity. With that, we know of certain cases where the infidelity was a way out for a partner who was already one foot out the door.
However, if your partner is making efforts to get you to stay, there’s a big chance that they do love you and want to be with you. Many of the couples I see for infidelity mention that the affair was a mistake. Many also say their commitment is with their spouses and always has been.
Infidelity Myth No.4
Now your relationship is forever tainted. It’ll never go back to what it used to be.
I’ll start with saying that the second half of this myth can be true. You will probably not have the same relationship as you knew it before the infidelity. But you may have a better one. This may have been your wake up call to make the changes you needed to make a long time ago. Also, as I mentioned on myth number 2 above. You may never be able to trust like you did before, but you can have a different type of trust that makes more sense in your relationship.
Now, let’s talk about the first part of this myth. Infidelity affects 1 in every 2.7 couples and most (65%-70%) stay together after. From those who stay and work through their problems, many report having an even better relationship than before. Infidelity, as life-shattering as it is, can be a wakeup call to a couple. It puts both of you in a place where there’s a great chance of losing your relationship and that probably pushed you to make changes and fast. Some of the changes are unnecessary, but if you make the effort learn why things happen the way they happened, you’ll both get valuable information as to what you can do to make it work even better than before.
The Free Healing After Infidelity Guide – Your Next Step
I’ve talked about 4 myths about infidelity and how to avoid them. Now, your next step is to see how you can avoid making the most common mistakes couples make trying to heal after infidelity. This guide lists the most common mistakes you are likely to make, or already have made trying to heal after infidelity. But it doesn’t leave you hanging waiting for advice because you get an actionable antidote to each common mistake. I’m sure you’ll love this and thank yourself for downloading this guide. Click on the image below to get instant access.
Final Word – Please Share The Message
Like I said before, these myths are alive and well. We hear them all the time and it seems like there’s no avoiding them. Unless.. you read this, change your mind, and tell others.
Please share this with as many people as possible because:
- This has to stop. People who have been through infidelity, don’t need to hear this. These myths are shaming people and pushing them to give up hope for their relationships.
- These myths are not encouraging or strengthening anyone. They really don’t help. The only thing they do is bring more doubt to the ones who are already drowning in uncertainty.
- If infidelity touched your life, please share this information with others.
- Finally, please help spread the word that there’s news in this area. It really is not what most people think.
I hope this has been helpful to you or someone you know. It is my mission to bring more awareness and hope to those affected by infidelity, and to those supporting them.
If you are in the trenches of the aftermath of infidelity and you feel you can use the help of an expert, Idit Sharoni, LMFT is here to help. Idit is a leading licensed psychotherapist and relationship expert in Miami, FL. She specializes in helping couples save their marriage and rebuild trust after infidelity. Call her North Miami / Aventura office (305) 507-9955 to schedule your consult. Click here to see what other couples say about working with Idit Sharoni.