Book Kimesha

Why Am I Attracted to Cheaters?

Dating and selecting the right mate can be one of life's most challenging tasks. Usually, when we look for an ideal partner one of the characters we assume they all have is the ability to be loyal. However, research shows that 15-20% of partners cheat in their marriage and 60% of singles cheat in their relationships.


This is alarming news but this article isn’t about stats and why people cheat.


Due to my own failed relationships and marriages, I wanted to take a deeper look at “why” we choose relationships with cheaters. Yes, that’s correct. If we have experienced a series of relationships where our partner has cheated, this may be partially your fault.


I recall having a rather uncommon conversation with a gentleman one Friday afternoon at On the Border. I was seated in the bar area, as a gentleman walks in and sparks a conversation sitting at the table slightly in front of me. After we both finished our lunch, we engaged in moderate conversation.


One question he asked me made me question myself and my picker. During the conversation, he stated his ex-wife divorced him because he too was guilty of cheating. I then mentioned that I too was divorced and that I and my ex were currently trying to reconcile. It was then that he asked me “What's your profile?”


A few years back I'd complete a relationship assessment and discovered that cheating was one of the main common traits among the men I had been in relationships with. So I immediately responded “cheaters”.


Most of my exes were cheaters. Even my ex at that time had confessed to cheating in our relationship. Here’s the irony of it, all my exes had been cheaters and now having a conversation with a cheater. The question I pondered on was, "what in me was attracting cheaters"?


As a recovering codependent and survivor of abuse, I’ve dedicated the last nine years to my healing. But something was still brewing in the background. And this was the very reason I haven’t dated anyone seriously after my last divorce. I feared I would end up back in the same place. FAILURE ISLAND.


Below are some common key traits of a cheater.


  1. Narcissism -Very self-centered, the constant need for validation, attention, and admiration.
  2. Deception - Cheaters always lie, miss phone calls, don’t return phone calls, and have frequent unknown whereabouts for hours, sometimes days.
  3. Jealousy – A honest partner is reliable and won’t doubt or accuse you because they don’t doubt themselves.
  4. Always Needing More – Cheaters are always looking to strike a better deal with the new fling.
  5. Insecure – Cheaters worry about their partner leaving them and ending up alone, so they keep rebounds around just in case.
  6. Thrill-Seeking – Cheaters love drama and enjoy the emotional roller coaster rides of a relationship rather than finding joy and emotional stability.
  7. Distorted View of Reality – Cheaters often get bored quickly and fear commitment. Sex is the primary driving force behind relationships in which they use as a form of acceptance or power.
  8. Lack of Respect- Cheaters normally have no regard for the rights of the other partner in the relationship. They use double standards and take advantage of their partner to achieve their own goals.


The interesting fact about being in a relationship with a cheater is that we date and even marry partners often knowing that they have several of the above traits. Let’s look at individuals that are attracted to cheaters and why.


These individuals usually:

  • Accept the lies
  • Live in a false reality (fantasy) themselves
  • Maintain the lie to protect themselves and the fantasy of having a happy relationship
  • Are passive and struggle with self-doubt
  • Makeup excuses for their cheating partner
  • Accept being disrespected and disregarded on a regular basis (this may be considered normal)
  • Minimize their requirements to keep the peace
  • Go against their own standards and morals to keep the relationship together
  • Put themselves last on the list

While we all want to point the finger at the other person at some point, we must take responsibility for our own actions and the role we play in each situation. Cheating is never a pain-free experience and damages your self-esteem. If you find yourself in a pattern of dishonest and cheating relationships, you may want to take some time to heal before going into another relationship. And most importantly recognize and acknowledge the red flags early on. Need help along your journey?

Kimesha Coleman is a Self Esteem Enhancement Expert and Coach who works with women through their stuck points. Join the Love Your Life 9-week Experience, start here by applying below.


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