10 common reasons why people cheat, according to experts

AMCThere are science backed reasons why people cheat.
  • Everyone has a different reason for cheating, but some are more common than others.
  • They may want the thrill and excitement that it brings.
  • There may be no clarity on your commitment levels.

Being cheated on can sometimes feel like the end of the world. Regardless how long you’ve been in your relationship, being cheated on by someone you love can affect your life in ways you probably never imagined. Although you could notice the signs your partner is cheating or even have proof that they could be lying to you, you don’t always get the answer as to why they have decided to do something so heartbreaking.

Even though everyone may have a different reason for why they choose to cheat, there are a few reasons that make people do what they do to the ones they love.

Here are some common reasons why people cheat, according to experts.


They had cheating parents.

AMCIf children see cheating, they might be more inclined to cheat themselves.

Nurture can have a lot to do with it too. Social dynamics and relationships coach and founder of The Power Moves Lucio Buffalmano, told INSIDER that another reason why people cheat is that they saw their parents exhibit that behaviour too.

“Some children who grow up in households where cheating was the norm can develop the same mindset,” said Buffalmano. “Some children, however, can also swing in the opposite direction. For example, that could mean someone vowing never to be like their cheating dad or home-wrecking mum. This option though is a bit less common.”


They have the “wrong” personality type.

4PM production/ ShutterstockSome personality types are just more likely to cheat.

Certain personality traits can also make people more likely to cheat.

“Some types of personalities are more likely to cheat,” Buffalmano said. “Some of them are: thrill seekers, addicts, reluctant grown-ups, avoidant attachment styles, narcissists, and chronic liars. These type of people are the ones you’ll want to avoid if committed and long-term relationships are what you are after.”


They are experiencing an uncomfortable relationship or life phases.

GeorgeRudy/ iStockChanges can lead to acting out or coping through cheating.

When things begin to change in a person’s life, they can react in ways that may not be ideal to those around them. For some, that may mean drinking or partying excessively, but for others, that could mean cheating.

“Some phases of life or relationships can lead to higher instances of cheating,” Buffalmano told INSIDER. “Examples of that include: beginning of relationships and unconscious rebellion to commitment, during their partner’s pregnancy – some men go through a fear of entrapment – or retirement to prove one ‘still has it.'”


They want the thrill and excitement that it brings.

Volodymyr Tverdokhlib / ShutterstockThey could just be looking for something different.

Sometimes, someone cheats because they want to feel the thrill of nearly being caught or simply because they want something “fresh” and new.

“For the cheater, the sex and relationship at home might feel boring, predictable, and mundane,” Alpert said. “Someone new provides a fresh and exhilarating alternative. Additionally, when there’s a risk of being caught, it heightens the level of excitement. It’s important to keep in mind, however, that the new guy or gal doesn’t truly represent real life. There are no bills to worry about, no everyday stress, or dealing with kids. An affair is isolated and immune from the vulnerabilities of a true relationship.”


They feel neglected in their current relationship.

nd3000/ iStockIt’s important to look at both sides.

When you’re the person being cheated on, it’s easy to blame everything on the person that’s doing the cheating. Though there is no excuse for someone cheating, Caleb Backe – health and wellness expert for Maple Holistics – told INSIDER that sometimes a partner may stray because they’re not feeling the love or attention in their current relationship.

“Feelings of neglect or under-appreciation can often lead to cheating,” he said. “If you’re comfortable in the relationship but don’t feel loved, cheating seems like the best way to get the attention you crave.”

That being said, sometimes no amount of love in a current relationship will stop someone from seeking more attention elsewhere.


The person deals with insecurity issues.

kieferpix/ iStockInsecurity can sometimes lead you to do things you regret.

Having an insecure partner can lead to many issues in your relationship. From being jealous to being controlling, being insecure can cause big problems in your relationships.Being insecure in your relationship can also lead to cheating – for either partner.

“Insecurity can lead to the need to ‘prove’ yourself sexually,” said Backe. “The conquest of someone who isn’t your partner is an all too easy way to feel good about yourself.”


They want to make you feel how they felt.

The WBRevenge can be a big part of it.

Finding a way to get over the feeling of being cheated on is hard. Even if you decide to take the person back after they have betrayed you, forgiving and moving past it can sometimes be impossible. And because of this, it may be easier to do the same thing to them.

“Seeking revenge on your partner is a large reason why many cheat,” Backe told INSIDER. “A partner’s betrayal is a trigger for you to behave the same way, or worse, give them a taste of their own medicine.”


There’s no clarity on your commitment levels.

nd3000/ iStockIf you’ve never had ‘the talk,’ what counts as ‘cheating’ may be unclear.

Though you may assume you’re in a relationship with someone if you’re spending lots of time together but unless you’ve both talked about being exclusive, you may run into someone having a more relaxed approach to your relationship.

“It’s important at a certain stage in any relationship to communicate regarding your commitment to each other,” Backe said. “Problems arise when one partner is not as committed as the other or didn’t understand that the relationship was exclusive.”


There’s a fear of abandonment.

Antonio Guillem / ShutterstockCheating can happen if the person cheating has emotional trauma.

It may seem counterproductive to cheat if you’re afraid of someone leaving you, but according to family and relationship psychotherapist and author of “The Self-Aware ParentDr. Fran Walfish, this can actually be a big driving factor. Emotional trauma can play a big part in that.

“Examples include divorce, a parent leaving and not returning, or an angry parent who rages toward the child unexpectedly and abusively (physically or verbally),” she said.


The person lacks healthy communication skills.

Roman Samborskyi / ShutterstockCommunication issues are a big factor.

Communication is the foundation to any lasting relationship and if you lack that, this can also lead to cheating.

“In both male and female cases of cheating, a lack of healthy communication skills can cause cheating,” Dr. Walfish said. “If they are able to talk about the problems and issues underlying within the relationship and deal with them directly, they could avoid infidelity.”

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