The lyrics to the song I’m not the Only One by Sam Smith had me thinking on the subject of infidelity and cheating. An amazing song:
‘You and me, we made a vow For better or for worse I can’t believe you let me down But the proof’s in a way it hurts
For months on end I’ve had my doubts Denying every tear I wish this would be over now But I know that I still need you here
You say I’m crazy ‘Cause you don’t think I know what you’ve done But when you call me baby I know I’m not the only one’ – Sam Smith
Relationships are difficult! Whether it is between colleagues, friends, and spouses, it is a challenging part of our lives .
Different personalities, temperaments and emotional baggage and scars, all make up who we are. Add all of this to a relationship with another individual and it makes an interesting and colorful smorgasbord.
While there are numerous factors that come into play when infidelity occurs in a relationship, the following are of importance and should be addressed by both parties:
*Was this an honest mistake or has it happened before?
*Why I am not ‘happy’ or satisfied in my relationship?
- What need(s) in me or my partner are not being met?
*Will I be able to trust my partner again?
There are so many angles to look at when it comes to relationships and this ranges from psychological to sociological to theological. It is a minefield really. An aspect that is often overlooked or downplayed is that of ‘soul ties’. A psychology term for this may be ‘co-dependence’1.
However, the Bible refers to something that is very important and a link to why some partners in relationships find it difficult to leave. The ‘knitting together’ or ‘binding’ together of two souls. The Bible mentions that we are tri-part beings: spirit, soul, and body (1 Thessalonians 5:23).
When a sexual connection takes place between two individuals their souls get connected or ‘tied’ together, so to speak (Ephesians 5:31 & 1 Corinthians 6:16). A soul tie2 is very real and in the correct context very powerful (unity) however in the incorrect context very destructive.
Is the statement – ‘Cheaters never change’, true? And why do they have a need to cheat? Do cheaters ever have remorse or experience regret for what they have done?
Often, we find one of two things that develop once a partner is suspected of or has been found out for cheating. Either the non-guilty partner stops caring altogether – their self-image, their health, and their appearance, or they get back at their cheating partner by cheating themselves (payback or revenge) or going all out by living a carefree and frivolous lifestyle of indulgence which is a coping mechanism for the pain they are suffering.
Another, often overlooked, aspect that plays a major role in relationships, especially marriages, is the ‘parent’ versus ‘lover’ issue. Many couples get married and are in love and are best friends. Then this changes the moment they become parents. Parenthood is a stressful and challenging time for any couple. But just because two people become parents does not mean they stop being lovers or best friends.
Once the children leave home, many couples do not know how to communicate anymore with one another, since they stopped being lovers and friends. Many see divorce as an only alternative or cheating as a viable option to engage in new friendships and romantic relationships, which they once had and enjoyed with their spouse.
Danger signs include:
*When looking at your spouse /partner and all you see is a parent
*Not spending time together as lovers
It usually goes something like this: two people fall in love and get married. They date and spent time with one another. They decide to start a family and after the child is born things change. It is hectic to raise a child and ‘do’ marriage’ and the interest in one another dwindles. Careers, school, family…it begins to take its toll on the relationship. Both partners long for intimacy and affection from each other but it is not forthcoming.
A sympathetic ear or an ‘understanding’ touch from a friend or colleague is all that is normally needed to get one of the partners looking at other options and questioning if marriage is really the answer, after all. Things deteriorate to such a point that cheating is the only ‘answer’ that seems logical. Another marriage, another broken family has evolved. The one aspect of life, of marriage, of relationships that people forget is this: even though you get married, even though you have a family and children you will always be an individual that needs love and affection which if not met in a committed relationship will, eventually, get met somewhere else. It is a question of balance: balancing a family and a relationship with your spouse. Because once the children re grown up and leave home there will be only you and your spouse/partner and eventually your partner/spouse will one day come to the end of their life which will leave you all alone.
As much care and dedication and love should be awarded to your relationship with your spouse as you do your children and family and even career. Balance. Priorities.
If cracks start appearing in a relationship, stop everything and seek help immediately. Trust your intuition and act on it. It is never too late to make changes and save a relationship.
Pr Paddick Van Zyl
#LDMI #cheaters #relationships
© Paddick Van Zyl – LDMI – 2016