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Wayward Side :
Addicted to Cheating

Topic is Sleeping.
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 Addicted22 (original poster new member #82699) posted at 5:43 PM on Monday, January 9th, 2023

Is there any way to get better and stop cheating?? I've emotionally cheated multiple times throughout my relationships. What can I do to stop ?? Besides choosing to not be monogamous relationship??

posts: 1   ·   registered: Jan. 9th, 2023
id 8772654
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EllieKMAS ( member #68900) posted at 5:51 PM on Monday, January 9th, 2023

Just a suggestion, but you may want to ask the mods to move this over to the wayward side.

As for how you stop? Sure a non-monogamous relationship is an option... but you can still cheat even in non-monogamous relationships. I think you should get yourself into therapy. Clearly the cheating is filling some gap within you and until you figure out what that is and address the underlying issue, then you won't stop IMHO.

Another good thing is to talk to other waywards here. There are a lot of them that have successfully navigated and healed from their infidelity. DaddyDom, Brave Sir Robin, MIGander, JBWD... so many others too. They can likely offer you some really good support and guidance on your journey as well as perspective about what they did that worked for them.

Good luck to you - finding SI and posting is a great first step!

"No, it's you mothafucka, here's a list of reasons why." – Iliza Schlesinger

"The love that you lost isn't worth what it cost and in time you'll be glad that it's gone." – Linkin Park

posts: 3901   ·   registered: Nov. 22nd, 2018   ·   location: Louisiana
id 8772656
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asc1226 ( member #75363) posted at 11:11 PM on Monday, January 9th, 2023

What can I do to stop ?? Besides choosing to not be monogamous relationship??

If you can’t abide by the fairly straightforward rules of a monogamous relationship how would you ever handle the complexities of non monogamy?

The problem isn’t with the type of relationship. The relationship isn’t cheating, you are.

Find an IC that has experience with infidelity who isn’t afraid to hold you accountable and doesn’t subscribe to the unmet needs model. You need to fix yourself.

I make edits, words is hard

posts: 612   ·   registered: Sep. 7th, 2020
id 8772693
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emergent8 ( Guide #58189) posted at 11:59 PM on Monday, January 9th, 2023

Hi Addicted,

Welcome to SI. I know how hard it can be to take the step to post here, so good for you for reaching out and for wanting to be better. I absolutely believe that you can stop cheating if you really want to and are willing to be honest with yourself and your motivations.

It's a little hard to provide specific advice without a little more information about your specific situation so when you're ready, I would really encourage you to post your story in the Wayward forum. I say this, not because you're not welcome here, but because your post will likely be a little triggering for some people here and the Wayward forum is more protected. If you'd like you can add a stop sign which will prevent

Without a little more information, I will have to stay general. If you want to stop, you actually have to want to stop. You can't keep doing the same thing you've been doing and expect a different result You need to understand why you're doing it. Lots of Waywards cheat because they have never learned to be responsible for their own happiness and instead they feel their sense of worth from others. They have super loose boundaries with people that they find attractive and then are seduced by the ego-boost that comes with flirtations with such people. They lie to themselves and tell them that flirting is harmless, because it's not crossing any "real" lines but as time goes on, the lines start getting moved farther and farther and eventually they are so far past it that they can no longer see where the line is. By that point, they are so addicted to the high they feelings they get from their AP, that they tie themselves into knots that they justify their cheating to themselves by telling themselves that their partner must not be living up to their expectations because of X,Y, or Z (insert whatever relationship complaint exists in the relationship).

Any part of that sound familiar?

[This message edited by emergent8 at 12:18 AM, Tuesday, January 10th]

Me: BS. Him: WS.
D-Day: Feb 2017 (8 m PA with married COW).
Happily reconciled.

posts: 2102   ·   registered: Apr. 7th, 2017
id 8772695
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SI Staff ( Moderator #10) posted at 12:40 AM on Tuesday, January 10th, 2023

  Moving to Wayward Side

posts: 10033   ·   registered: May. 30th, 2002
id 8772702
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MIgander ( member #71285) posted at 2:20 PM on Tuesday, January 10th, 2023

Hi Addicted,

I know this personally as I've been reliant on the opinion of others to define my worth most my life. It was the high of the ego kibble of someone liking me or something I did. It led to me flushing my M down the toilet with my final EA/PA. My H struggles with EA's too, in a different form.

I agree with the others- more info is needed. What do you get out of these relationships? What kind of a hole are you trying to fill with other people's praise?

It's been a long journey, one I'm travelling still, but if you can start to answer those questions, you'll be able to find answers. With a good IC, you'll be able to figure out what led you to this place, and the IC can help guide you out to a more healthy place.

How do YOU feel about YOURSELF? Start asking that question each time you find yourself looking for someone else to reflect your image back to you, and you'll start finding the answers.

Good luck, keep posting.

WW/BW Dday July 2019. BH/WH- multiple EA's. Denial ain't just a river in Egypt.

posts: 1178   ·   registered: Aug. 15th, 2019   ·   location: Michigan
id 8772737
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DaddyDom ( member #56960) posted at 4:36 PM on Tuesday, January 10th, 2023

Hi Addicted22

Welcome to SI. As mentioned earlier, it might help you to reframe what exactly your challenge is, and then you'll have a clearer path to resolving it. Take your username for example, it's actually a great example of what I'm talking about. Consider the average addict, let's say an alcoholic. If you were to ask them, they would probably say they are an addict because they have a problem with alcohol. But that's not really the truth. Many addicts, when trying to "quit", will instead just switch to a new addiction. They might switch to drugs, or smoking, or overeating, gambling, or even become workaholics or exercise too much. My point being, the problem isn't that they are addicted to alcohol, the problem is that they need something in their lives to help them to minimize or avoid the pain and stress of the trauma in their lives.

Many of us here have found that same approach helped us to recover. The problem isn't that we can't "keep it in our pants". The problem is that we have a hole in our hearts that we need to fill. Many of us have come to the realization that what we really were looking for wasn't sex... we had that already, being married and all. We were looking to feel special. We wanted other people to tell us that we're wonderful people, that they've been thinking about us, or wanting us, or commiserating with our struggles, whatever. In other words, the infidelity was a result, or a side effect, of a much larger, deeper issue. A person who loves themselves, who respects themselves and others, who has healthy boundaries, morals, ideals, and who doesn't need others to define their own self-worth, is someone who would NEVER have an affair in the first place. They don't need to, and even if they thought they did, they would never allow themselves to be that person. For example, if someone offered to pay you to kill another person, would you do it? I assume not. But why? What if I told you that you could 100% get away with it, would you do it then? For most of us, we would not. Because we're not murderers, and we don't want to be murderers, and could not live with ourselves knowing we had taken the life of another for selfish purposes.

Not having an affair is very much the same. The idea isn't to "white knuckle it", you've seen how that approach works for things like dieting and quitting smoking... it's a temporary fix that always fails over time. Rather, what you need to do is to remove whatever it is that is causing you to desire the affair in the first place. If there is no need or desire to have an affair, then there is no need to white-knuckle anything.

There are no quick fixes. There is no "do this and it will all be better tomorrow". And most of all, there are no guarantees. You need to do the work to figure out who you are and what drives you to cheat, and that takes a lot of introspection and self-reflection. It also takes enormous amounts of courage, patience, humility, and a willingness to look in the mirror and see what's really there rather than who we want to see. Most of all, it takes dedication. This is not an easy road, but I can promise you this much... it is SO WORTH doing.

Don't fool yourself. Not being in a monogamous relationship won't fix shit. Because the relationship isn't the problem, the problem is inside of you. Until you change, then wherever you go... there you are. You aren't safe to be in a relationship with, whether it's marriage, dating, friendship or work. As long as you allow your drive to seek out comfort and attention from others to be a priority in your life, you will always end up hurting yourself and others. It's a shitty way to live, a shitty way to feel, and a shitty outcome in life.

On the other hand... you have the power to change. And things can change quicker than you think, it's all really a matter of how open-minded you are, how honest you are with yourself, and how willing you are to "do the work" to change and improve.

We can help guide and support you in this journey, but it will still be on you to do the work, feel the feelings, and struggle with the struggles.

Start by looking at the link at the top of this page called "The healing library". It's a great place to start learning about what both the BS and WS go through. Take some time to read the articles there and start getting an idea of how your actions impact yourself and others. Then keep coming back. Don't be afraid to ask stupid questions, and by all means, be open to getting some "2x4's" (tough love) without running for the hills. We're going to say some stuff that might piss you off at first. That's okay, we've ALL been there. You'll survive. And over time, it will start to make sense and you will see progress.

Welcome to SI. Sorry to see you here, but you found the right place.

Me: WS
BS: ISurvivedSoFar
D-Day Nov '16
Status: Reconciling
"I am floored by the amount of grace and love she has shown me in choosing to stay and fight for our marriage. I took everything from her, and yet she chose to forgive me."

posts: 1435   ·   registered: Jan. 18th, 2017
id 8772758
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Bulcy ( member #74034) posted at 4:39 PM on Tuesday, January 10th, 2023

Hi Addicted,

Welcome to SI, now you're on the Wayward forum I hope you'll get some sounds advice from us. You've only posted a couple of lines on the OP and as others have stated you will need to give more context to help us give you the support needed to help answer your questions.

I'll start by offering my experience of SI. I came on here with the wrong intentions. I came here to find a wayward spouse who was in a similar situation to me and to use their story to answer my own. I wanted someone to give me the answers, so that I did not have to "do the work". It took me a long time to see that I needed to find my own answers and I really had to look deeply into myself for the real "what's" and "how's" never mind the deeper question of "why?". Getting some way past this has enabled me to make the choice to try and work on myself with the support of the guys on here and my own research and IC. The guys mentioned above by Ellie, will hopefully dive into this thread soon. They too will want more information to be able to help. Sometimes the advice given is a little difficult to read and can be painful. This is something other past posters have had difficulty with and either get defensive or leave the forum. I always say that the guys posting on here have no interest in upsetting you, they have to hidden motive to attack wayward spouses, what they say in with the best intentions. That said it can get quite heated when a WS is not "getting it" or acting so defensively that this triggers both the BS and WS who are trying to help. Please post again and please stick with us.

So to your questions

Is there any way to get better and stop cheating?

-Simply put, yes there is. Or more correctly yes there are. You chose to do everything you did. Every act of infidelity is a choice by the WS. Sometimes a difficult concept to grasp at first, but it's true. For me, the first step is honestly. Honesty with yourself. You need to stop any form of lie to yourself. This includes justifications and minimisations. Write a short timeline of everything you've done that could be considered wayward. Own what you've done, you did this and you need to be the one to change your behaviours. In time you can work on what was the origin of your wayward behaviour. That is a long and difficult process. One you'll get support with on here.

Also, read. I would start with How to help your spouse heal from your affair (L MacDonald). Also Cheating in a nutshell is a good book, but hard to read as a WS. Ultimately you have to make the choice to stop. It's as simple as that, but getting to that place is a difficult road. Something I try and do is imagine my BS is with me in everything I do. Every e-mail I send, every text message, every work interaction. What would BS say or do if they were with you? If you feel safe in doing or saying something when on your own as you would with BS then you're on a good path.


What can I do to stop ?? Besides choosing to not be monogamous relationship??

I think a good therapist will help with this. You'll need to unpick why you chose to cheat. What happens inside your head that you use to allow wayward behaviour? Not an easy task. There is support on here pinned to the top of the forum. If you've not read it, read it now.

Also, keep posting. Respond to the people who are taking their time to support you. One of my failings with this forum is not doing this. I've had replies which did not fit the narrative I was pushing for, so I ignored the help I was getting rather than see it as a mechanism for self reflection and change. We also like to know how you're doing, where the struggles are.

Stick with us and good luck

WH (50's)

Multiple sexual, emotional and online affairs. Financial infidelity and emotional abuse. Physical abuse and intimidation.

D-days 2003, 2017, multiple d-days and TT through 2018 to 2023. 28 years of destructive and health damaging choice

posts: 366   ·   registered: Mar. 12th, 2020   ·   location: UK
id 8772760
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jb3199 ( member #27673) posted at 2:44 PM on Sunday, January 15th, 2023

Is there any way to get better and stop cheating?? I've emotionally cheated multiple times throughout my relationships. What can I do to stop ?? Besides choosing to not be monogamous relationship??

Perhaps a good start would be to NOT just put up a post of a few questions, and walk away. At this point, you are six days, and counting, since your only post.

Engage, be willing to get uncomfortable, and open yourself up to advice of others who have been there....on both sides of the cheating. Otherwise, you are going to keep getting the same old results.

BH-50s
WW-50s
2 boys
Married over 30yrs.

All work and no play has just cost me my wife--Gary PuckettD-Day(s): EnoughAccepting that I can/may end this marriage 7/2/14

posts: 4349   ·   registered: Feb. 21st, 2010   ·   location: northeast
id 8773461
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RocketRaccoon ( member #54620) posted at 4:20 AM on Monday, January 16th, 2023

As there does not seem to be a Stop sign currently, I will drop in with a couple of things.

Is there any way to get better and stop cheating?? I've emotionally cheated multiple times throughout my relationships. What can I do to stop ??


Simple answer is Yes. The more complicated one is 'Are you willing to change?'. You will need fundamental changes done (through working with an IC) to address the issues you are asking about.


Besides choosing to not be monogamous relationship??


Genuine questions: Why this specifically? Why are you avoiding this?

You cannot cure stupid

posts: 1146   ·   registered: Aug. 12th, 2016   ·   location: South East Asia
id 8773512
Topic is Sleeping.
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