Should cheating be forgiven?
The worst way to get your heart-broken: get cheated on by the person you love. It hurts as if somebody stabbed you in the back and you feel like laughing with them because you were so stupid to not see the stab coming. It hurts but we try our best to get over those feelings, sometimes by flushing out the cheaters out of our lives and sometimes by forgiving them and forgetting they ever did something like that.
We humans love dearly, so dearly that we are able to look over people’s mistakes to save the relationship we have with them. Before you decide to forgive, if you have been cheated on, read these 15 questions, they will help you take a decision.
1. Is Cheating Their Habit?
Was it more than once? Or was it just once? It matters. When we are doing something wrong, we become the greatest justices of the act and justify it in every way possible; lust blinds us. But if we get used to doing wrong things then our conscience needs washing.
If they cheated on you once and are deeply, truly sorry about it, you should consider forgiving them. If they have done it before, more than once, then we suggest you walk away without paying heed to what they have to say.
2. What Kind of Cheating Was It?
We had to ask this question because some people consider flirting and even having a close male/female friend cheating too. So, first of all, know what actually counts as cheating and then assess the situation. And if they did cross the limits according to you, try to see the reason behind it.
Is your relationship with them plain and dry and they wanted to have fun so they kissed a co-worker unable to control their urge? Are you emotionally unattached to them and all they needed was someone to be close to? If the situation can be dealt with, try to.
3. Did they do it again?
When the first time you forgave them and accepted their apology, they promised they would never look away again. Did they keep that promise? It is necessary you ask yourself this question because you built your trust back up the first time when they broke it, doing it a second time can take a lot of your energy which you might not even have left.
So if the act was done once and was out of innocent desperation, try to forgive and if you do not find it in you to forgive it, don’t.
4. Was It a One-Night Cheat?
Again, it could have been lust taken over them. If waking up the next morning, the first thing they decided to do was to tell you because the guilt of doing it was killing them, consider accepting the apology. If it was not just the one night but is actually something serious going on the side, dump them.
A person who has the balls to keep two men/women in the dark deserves no second chance. Don’t even cry over them; your tears are worth more than their conscious mistakes.
5. Who did they cheat with?
This prospect of the affair might not matter too much to you as the mere fact that they cheated would be enough to break your heart but on a deeper level, it might help you decide if you are considering forgiving them. Was it someone close? Was it one of your friends or the maid or an old friend?
Or was it some prostitute or someone you have never heard of? Pay attention to this little detail if you find it in your heart to consider forgiving them.
6. Would You Have Done It?
We are no saints but sinners. What we do wrong while judging a situation is that we fail to see the other person’s side of the story. Would you have done the same if you were in the same circumstances as them? Would your mind have slipped and let lust take over every moral and principle?
If you find even a little yes’ echoing in your heart then try to forgive them, of course, only if they are truly sorry. We are not perfect and neither are the mistakes that we make.
7. Can You Deal With It?
If you are deciding to forgive the culprit, know that the situation between you two will take time to get back on track. After a trauma, the effects of it take long to fade away and things get back to normal over time. Ask yourself if you have got enough time and potential to work on the mess or not.
If you are willing to put everything back in place, go on. If you do not think that you can gather the time and energy to clean up the mess they made then move on.
8. Is It Easy To Forget?
Sometimes, forgetting is more difficult than forgiving. If you have decided to forgive them, it is possible that you may not be able to forget what they did. You will not stop loving them, of course, like Rachel never did when Ross cheated on her, but forgetting might be impossible to do.
So if their infidelity comes to your mind every time you are about to kiss them and every romantic thought is blocked by the thought of their dishonesty, maybe your decision of forgiving was not the best decision.
9. Can You Get Over It?
The relationship will be pretty bumpy to continue if you are unable to shove the rocks behind on your way forward i.e. if you are unable to take the events out of your mind. If you keep bringing it up even after you decided to forgive them, things won’t be pleasant between you two.
He/she will obviously stay quiet knowing it’s better than to defend their case; your inability to get over it will ruin not only your mood but also almost everything about your relationship.
10. Can You Trust them again?
Will you be able to act like a normal girlfriend/boyfriend again? Will you find it in you to not doubt him/her at every step of their life being afraid that they will do what they did one more time? Because if you won’t, the relationship won’t be anything less than a complicated affair where there is no romance.
There will be no point in continuing it. So ask yourself if you can be the normal girlfriend/boyfriend again and if the answer is no, putting an end to it would be the way to go.
11. Does It Affect Your Self-Esteem?
When you are deciding to look over their apparent mistake and accepting them again like you always did, will you be hurting your own self-respect? Will it in any way make you feel less respectable? Because staying with a person who was brave enough to dodge you once can do that.
You might later think about it and blame yourself for not being with someone who valued your presence in their life. It is a possibility and that too an effective one. Take your life in your hands and dump them if you think forgiving them will hurt your self-esteem.
12. Is He or She a Narcissist?
Did they blame you when they were caught cheating? Did their reasons of doing it somehow point the finger on you as if you and your actions compelled them to do what they did? Walk away the minute you find them doing so. Even if the distance in your relationship had been at an increase those days, he/she holds no right to put his/her hunger for attention on you.
Narcissists are dangerous; not the best people to be in a relationship with and not at all worthy of forgiveness.
13. Are They Now Giving Their Best?
His/her attitude after being caught can help you a lot in deciding whether or not you should forgive him/her. If they are willing to look beyond the past wiping their slate clean and dedicating their actions to you and you only, they mean that they are sorry.
But if their world still revolves around themselves and their eyes around other people, there is no chance they deserve forgiveness.
14. Are They Worth It?
After going through all the questions, ask yourself if he/she is worth all the effort. Is he/she that perfect guy/girl you thought you could never replace? Are they worth all the hard work needed to take the relationship where it was before?
If they are, you can think of accepting the apology but if they have never really been Mr. /Ms. Right, don’t hesitate in moving forward.
15. Do You Think You Can Do Better?
In the end, it was you who was played and hurt so it should be the most important question when deciding to forgive the cheater: are you able to get better than a cheater? After all those questions, if you cannot get over the fact that they cheated and if that is all you can see in the story, ask this one last question. And then decide accordingly.
Talk to me
Have you been cheated on? I know I have. How did you find out and what did you do about it? Share your stories with me in the comments below!