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Cheating and infidelity

Cheating means breaking the rules you have agreed on in a committed relationship. Usually cheating refers to sexual infidelity or adultery.

If you're making out or having sex with someone outside of your committed relationship, it means you’re cheating on your partner.

Cheating doesn’t always have to be sexual. Sometimes cheating is on an emotional level. When someone shares intimate thoughts with a person who’s not their partner, it’s called emotional cheating.

Cheating of any form can cause a lot of sorrow in relationships and can even lead to break-up or divorce.

Find out more about cheating in our Cheating: top five facts.

Why do people cheat?

There are many reasons why people cheat on their partners. You might cheat if you don’t love your partner any more, if sex isn’t satisfying, if your partner has cheated on you in the past, or if you feel neglected or under-appreciated.

Lying to your partner about your affairs can be a stop-gap arrangement, but it’s very likely that sooner or later your partner will discover the truth. If you feel guilty about having cheated and don't want to end your relationship, confessing might be an option. You could also keep quiet about what happened, although the lack of honesty could put a strain on your relationship.

If you've cheated and decided you want to end it with your partner, there are two options – to confess your behaviour and say goodbye or to hide your infidelity and say you want to break up for other reasons.

Is your partner cheating on you?

If you know your partner well and have had a close, long-term relationship, you can often tell when something’s not right. You might notice that they’ve begun spending a lot more time at work, they have less time for you and your family, start taking calls in private, and seem less committed to doing things with you. Maybe they're paying attention to their looks, and they appear confused and detached. When you ask them if anything's wrong, they shrug off your question.

Finding out that your partner’s been cheating on you can be a traumatic experience. It can seriously damage the trust between the two of you and could even lead to a break-up, separation, or divorce. You might spend days, weeks, or months wondering what you did wrong and why this happened.

But don't blame yourself – take some time to calm down and think about your relationship.

Whether you want to stay with your partner depends on a number of things. Is your partner willing to go on? If they are, what will it take for them to regain your trust? Will your trust in them ever be restored? How can you start rebuilding your relationship?

The answers may not be simple, but give these questions some thought and it might help you decide on the right path to take.

Comments
Hello Ryta, So sorry about this. Getting over a cheating incident can be tough, but if both partners are willing to work out the relationship they maybe able to make it work. You need to think about what you want moving forward, if you no longer love your husband and can't even trust him like you did, it maybe time to breakup. Have a look at the this article with tips to help you recover;- https://lovematters.co.ke/love-relationships/relationship-problems/tips-to-recover-from-cheating-in-marriage
Eugene M.
Sat, 04/14/2018 - 07:32
I think going through your partner's phone can raise issues. Just trust her and believe that she is faith ful to you. We all have different magnitudes of privacy. Respecting her privacy improves her trust on you.
I honestly feel like trust is not even a thing anymore. Almost everybody is cheating on their partner in one way or another. Porn, Sexting with other people...you name them. Soon, cheating will probably be as normal as Kenyans eating chapatis on Sundays. Wanna see some of the stupid excuses people give for cheating today? I found this article quite relatable. Check it out! http://guytalk.xyz/2018/04/12/stupid-excuses-people-give-for-cheating-today/
I have a girlfriend who I love so much and I think she loves me too, we have been together for about 1 yr now. The problems began when she moved to another town for work, calls begun to reduce she take so long to reply my test. When I ask she say she is always busy. Is it possible that she is cheating and do long distance relationship work?please help a disturbed bro.

Hey Kimiye, it's not possible to tell if she is cheating on you but it is important you share this concern with her. Remember the intention should be to share with her what you have observed and not to accuse her a cheater. This way she will have an opportunity to let you know what could be going on then together you can agree on how to proceed. Long distance relationships do work if the partners are willing to make the relationship work. Some of the things you can do to try make the relationship work including frequent communication which you can make work using the different available mediums of communications, plan together for the future and work together toward that future and lastly plan and spend time together from time to time as resources will allow. Check out this article for more tips;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/happy-relationships/long-distance-relationships-dos-and-donts

I caught my girlfriend cheating on me with my friend. She apologized and said it was this once only but I am not able to trust her again. My mind says run my heart says give her a chance. Help me make the right decision...

Hi Faith, when a partner cheats they break the rules of the relationship and it also affects trust in the relationship. Sometimes a person can change and commit to the relationship you have, unfortunately there is no way to predict the future and whether they will indeed commit to what you have. This is a decision only you can make, you have to take sometime and think about whether you are willing to give her a chance and then make a decision on how to proceed, to break up or get back together. Check out this article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/guide-to-recovery-for-the-cheated

I think my hubby is cheating on me. He has changed so much, gets angry over small issues, he is always gets home and says he is busy at work. I am stressed and I want out of this relationship.

Hey Esther, so sorry about this. However,  there is no way to know for sure if someone is cheating on you. The best thing you can do is try to communicate with your partner. Be honest with them about your suspicions and your feelings along with your fears. I know this can be scary to bring it up but try to just tell them why you suspect something is wrong and not just accuse them a cheater. Generally if we hold on to our thoughts you might take things the wrong way believe something without knowing if it is real or not. Check out this article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/is-your-partner-cheating

Hi Irene, we are so sorry about this. Only you can decide when it is enough for you. Have you talked to your partner on this issues of cheating on you repeatedly? If you have talked about this and he has not changed then it is time for you to make a very hard decision, the decision to break up. This is a decision only you can make, take time and think about what you want from a relationship and then decide how to proceed. If you choose to stay it may mean to your partner that you are okay with this behavior. Think carefully about this and make an informed choice. Check out this article;-  https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/knowing-when-to-break-up

Hey Liz, you need to think about what this confession is likely to do to your relationship and also what not confessing will do to you. You will have to then choose the option that you feel you can live, think about the consequences and then choose what you are willing to live with. Also, take time and think about what led you to the cheating as you think about how to proceed with your relationship. 

Hi,i have been dating a man now for two years,i dont know any of his family or friend.Whenever i ask him he tells me not to hurry things.He has just changed he can go for a month without talking to me.When i ask he say he's been busy.He has never appreciated me as.When i have a problem and need his help he's never there for me.Now i feel he is cheating and i love him so much.Am now stressed and dont know what to do.Please help

Hello Sharon, we are sorry about whats going on in your relationship. It is difficult to say what could be going on with your partner or whether he is cheating on you, you however need to think about what kind of relationship you want to have and whether what is happening in your relationship is what you want. You seem to have done your best to raise the concerns with him and it may seems he does not have the time for you. Take time and think about what you want now and in the days to come, think about whether you are willing to try and reach out to him to see if he is willing to change. If he is not, you are going to have to make the difficult decision of breaking up with him. This will be difficult since you are still in love with him. Sad reality about relationships, is that not all of them will last for a lifetime and sometimes it may be of no fault of yours.Check out this article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/jealousy-and-other-problems https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/knowing-when-to-break-up

We wish you well.

Hey Chax, it is possible for a relationship go back to what it was or even better after one partner has cheated. It will however depend on whether the two partners are willing to make it work. The partner at fault needs to admit their fault but also the the other partner should be willing to forgive. If the two partners are willing then they can make it work. In some cases though, cheating may mean the end of a relationship. Think about about whether this possible in your relationship and talk about it with your partner to see if it will work. We do wish you well. Check out the following articles;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/guide-to-recovery-for-the-cheated 

https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/knowing-when-to-break-up

Anonymous
Tue, 06/26/2018 - 08:05
I caught my husband red handed having sex with our house girl. I am in shock I don't even know what to do. It has been 5 weeks since I delivered our first child. The maid says this has been going on for months now. He doesn't want to talk about it, I just hate him. How could he do this to me at this time

Hi, So sorry about this. There is really no good reason to explain cheating. It is however important for you both talk about this and then agree on how to proceed. If your partner is unwilling to talk about what happened then you will have to take sometime, think about what your options are and then make a decision on how to proceed. Sometimes the person who cheated can seek for forgiveness and then change and fully commit to the relationship, this however, you can only learn if you do talk about this and your partner is willing to be open and honest about it. https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/tips-to-recover-from-cheating-in-marriage We do wish you well.

I have a gut feeling that my partner is cheating on me based on how he is acting of late. I don't know how to deal with this to walk away or confront him?

Hey Rachel,   there is no way to know for sure if your partner is cheating on you. The best thing you can do is try to communicate with your partner. Be honest with them about your suspicions and your feelings along with your fears. I know this can be scary to bring it up but try to just tell them why you suspect something is wrong and not just accuse them a cheater. Generally if we hold on to our thoughts you might take things the wrong way believe something without knowing if it is real or not. https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/how-can-i-know-my-partner-is-cheating-on-me

Anonymous
Tue, 07/03/2018 - 11:30
I am currently dating a work colleague. We both moved to this town for work. I think he is cheating on me or he was already in a relationship when we started out. He is no longer available over the weekends because he has to travel sometimes I get to know when he already left. He doesn't responds to calls but prefers texting when he has traveled. When I raised this with him he just said he was dealing with some stuff and nothing more. Could this mean he has another person?

There is no way to know for sure if someone is cheating on you. The best thing you can do is try to communicate with your partner. Be honest with them about your suspicions and your feelings along with your fears. I know this can be scary to bring it up but try to just tell them why you suspect something is wrong and not just accuse them a cheater. Generally if we hold on to our thoughts you might take things the wrong way believe something without knowing if it is real or not. Check out this article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/signs-of-a-cheating-boyfriend

I started masturbation when I was 12 years. I am now married and still do. I feel guilty everytime and feel I am cheating on my wife. How can I stop doing it?

Hey Wycliffe, masturbation can be a great way to relieve sexual tension especially when your partner is unavailable. People in relationships also do masturbate, you may need to think about what makes you masturbate and whether the reason are positive and negative. If you do feel you should stop, think about what triggers this and then begin to avoid this. For instance if it is porn, you need to avoid porn and fill your leisure time with other productive activities. Check out the following articles;- 

https://lovemattersafrica.com/making-love/ways-to-make-love/masturbation-myths-busted

https://lovemattersafrica.com/making-love/ways-to-make-love/is-masturbation-cheating

Hi, so sorry about this? Have you spoken with your partner about this? It maybe important to talk with your partner about the cheating to see whether they are sorry about and whether your relationship has a chance. Remember, you also need to think about whether you are willing to forgive them if they ask and trust them like you did before. It is possible to work things out and go on to have a great relationship. All the best. Have a look at the following article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/guide-to-recovery-for-the-cheated

https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/knowing-when-to-break-up

Hi Nora, it is possible for a relationship to be restored after a cheating incidence. Both partners however, need to be committed to making the relationship work moving forward. The person who cheated needs to acknowledge their wrong and seek forgiveness while the person who was cheated on needs to be willing to accept the apology and forgive their partner. Both partners need to agree to start on a clean slate. Sometimes however, cheating may mean the end of a relationship. Check out the following article for more information;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/cheating-top-five-facts

https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/guide-to-recovery-for-the-cheated

Dear Sue, one first needs to decide which kind of a person they want for a partner and then talk about your expectations early in the relationship and also have your partner tell you of their expectations. Also, communication that's open and honest will also help to ensure that you are able to address issues when they come up. Lastly, you want to be with a person whom you love and respect and they also do the same for you. Wish you well. Check out this article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/happy-relationships/is-your-relationship-the-right-one

Claris Shee
Wed, 07/25/2018 - 14:28
We are in a long distance relationship. My fiance that I have been with for about two years went to work in another city but now I suspect he is seeing another woman. He is always busy and he takes long to return my calls.He used to come see me every weekend but now 2 times or only once a month. I am afraid of confronting him because he is the one who has supported my education. What should I do?

Dear Claris, something has changed about your partner and your relationship. Making a long distance relationship work can be challenging. But if both partner are committed they can make it work. It is important you talk about the changes you have observed in your partner including the lack of communication and the reduced visits. These are the things that would make your relationship work, without them the relationship is likely to fail. There is no other way other that to confront your partner about this, the issue is how you will bring up this conversation. I recognize he has played what you believe is an important role in your life and this is the more reason why you need to talk to about this and find a solution moving forward. Find a good time to bring this issues up, remember the intention is to accuse him of cheating but to share you feelings and concerns based on what you have observed. This way you can together agree on how to proceed. Check out the following articles for more;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/happy-relationships/long-distance-relationships-dos-and-donts 

https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/happy-relationships/tips-for-talking-to-your-partner

Anonymous
Wed, 07/25/2018 - 14:40
my husband cheated on me and I am unable to overcome the feelings of betrayal, anger, disappointment+++ How can I do this? Can my relationship really work after this cheating?

Hey there, so sorry about this. The feelings you are experiencing are normal. You partner broke your trust in him. This was not your fault since you have no control over the choices your partner makes. Has your husband shown any remorse since this happened? Has he apologized? Give yourself sometime, think about whether you want to forgive him and keep the relationship or not. It will take time before you can feel better about this. Lastly, the relationship can still work if both partners are committed and willing to make it work. Your partner would have to first seek forgiveness from you and you would have to forgive him and then both of you commit to the relationship and each other for it to work. Check out the following article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/tips-to-recover-from-cheating-in-marriage

Hey Sylviah, so sorry about this. Have you talked with him about this? It is important that you find a good time to talk about this and based on your conversation you can then make a decision on how to proceed. I know this is a difficult conversation but it is important to talk about it to agree on the way forward. Check out the following article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/tips-to-recover-from-cheating-in-marriage

Hi love matters, I had a boyfriend who we broke up. There is a new guy after me who only wants to sleep with me because this is all he talks about when he calls or texts. He also sends nude pics and wants me to send too. He claims to love me dearly...should i trust this guy?

Hey Ashley, I couldn't possibly tell you whether to trust him or not, this is a decision only you can make. The decision to have sex is one that you only should make. You should only have sex with someone if you feel they are the right person and it is the right time in the relationship. If you are not ready and you are concerned about his requests for sex, you need to let him know. Also, if you do not wish to send him any photos of your own, do let him know. Take time and think about whether you want to be with this person and then talk about what you want from a relationship and have him share with you what he wants from a relationship. This way you can decide on how to proceed. 

I have been dating this man for the year and a half and over this period I have not met any of his friends or even family. He has met my family and friends. He claim to be an indoors person so we never go out we are always in. Should I trust him, I feel like he is hiding something from me!

Dear Zahra, have you talked to him about this? It is important that you talk to him and share your concerns with him. At times when you hold on to you thoughts you may end up taking things the wrong way. Relationships are about compromise, while he enjoys the indoors, if you prefer the outdoors, do talk about it so that you spend some of the time in the outdoors. Find a good time to talk about these issues so you can agree on how to proceed. Have a look at this article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/happy-relationships/tips-for-talking-to-your-partner

Hey Love matters, I have been in a relationship with a guy for about 3 years. He has since changed so much, he makes empty promises when he says he will call he chooses not to or even when he says he will come to check up on me. I do not want to loose him, what should I do?

Hey Jean, have you talked to him about this? It is important that you talk to your partner and let him know what you have observed. Open and honest communication will help improve your relationship. Find a good time and talk about what your expectations as you also allow your partner to share their expectations. Check out the following article;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/happy-relationships/tips-for-talking-to-your-partner

Dear Silvya, so sorry about. People cheat for various reasons. Best thing for you to do right now is to take sometime and heal from this. Unfortunately, not all relationship will last a life time. However, just because one relationship didn't work doesn't mean the next one won't. Take sometime to heal and get over this hurt and when you feel ready you can try again. Remember this was not your fault and you have no control of the choices of your partner. We wish you well. Have a look at this articles;- https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/relationship-problems/why-do-people-cheat

https://lovemattersafrica.com/love-relationships/breaking-up/guide-to-recovery-for-the-cheated

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