There’s great irony in people who cheat in relationships. They cheat because they think it will make them happier, but it actually does the opposite. In their misery, they continue making self-harming choices. When your significant other has been unfaithful, you might not understand why—and neither do they.
Here’s what cheaters don’t seem to get about happiness:
1. Happiness isn’t in the future
Cheaters usually have a huge flaw in their logic: their future will always be happier later. That’s why they cheat. They think they will be happy once they find someone better good-looking, richer, and more exciting. If you keep postponing your happiness until some later date, you forget to enjoy the present.
2. Dishonesty hurts everyone
It hurts you, it hurts your partner, it hurts your forbidden lover, and cheating will taint future relationships.
3. Happiness doesn’t come from relationships
Although relationships can definitely contribute, they aren’t central to your happiness. You could have the best relationship in the world, but if you aren’t happy with yourself, you will still be miserable. Inner peace and being content with yourself have to come first.
4. Be content with what you have
Your significant other might not be everything you ever wanted, but appreciate their good qualities. Even amazing people still have flaws. Don’t cheat just because you aren’t satisfied with what you have.
5. Secrets are stressful
Even if your partner never finds out that you cheated, you are destroying your own happiness. The stress of hiding it day after day will take its toll. Either be loyal or break it off— for your own sake. Relationships aren’t always that simple, but you will be happier this way.
6. Your partner probably isn’t happy, either
If you’re so miserable with your relationship that you decide to cheat, then your partner is probably feeling some of that same unhappiness. It’s better to break up than to cheat.
7. The grass isn’t always greener on the other side
Sure, you can cheat, but realize that the people you’re cheating with probably aren’t better than your current partner. The cheaters keep thinking that happiness always waits with someone else.
8. Be careful how you define happiness
If you define happiness as only what makes YOU happy, then you never consider the needs of other people. This selfishness will keep you miserable.
9. Happiness means different things to different people
One of the biggest miscommunications in relationships comes when you and your partner aren’t making each other happy. You’re not meeting each other’s’ needs. If you want to stop cheating and find more value in your current relationship, a great first step would be to find out what makes you and your partner happy.
10. Happiness is a process, not an event
You can’t expect to suddenly be happy when you cheat. It takes time to appreciate the beautiful things in your life. Happiness doesn’t strike like lightning. Give yourself some time to change.
11. You don’t have to be happy all the time
Some people, who start relationships with unrealistic expectations, begin to cheat because they thought that a happy relationship meant that they were 100% happy 100% of the time. News flash: that’s not how life works. You can still have a good, healthy relationship even if you aren’t happy every second.
12. Emotions are contagious
If you are disdainful with your significant other, your attitude won’t change when you cheat. You carry your same attitudes with you wherever you go, and your selfish vibes spread to the person you’re cheating with. And the next person you get in a relationship with. And the pattern continues.
13. Some kinds of happiness last longer than others
The pleasure of cheating will never give you the long-lasting joy of a healthy relationship.
14. Cheaters don’t know how to prioritize
They put sexual pleasure before loyalty, kindness, and hard work. Consider what really matters most to you. If happiness is really a priority, then selfish choices will begin to disappear.
15. The kind of people you’re cheating with are not people who will make you happy
If everyone understood this principle, no one would ever cheat. The flaky people who are willing to go on a fling with you are the type of people who only want to use you.
16. Dear cheaters, you have flaws too
They cheat because they think their current partner isn’t good enough. But if they just looked in the mirror, they might realize that they have plenty of problems themselves. If you want to be happy with yourself, start fixing some of your mistakes.
17. The truth comes out
Sooner or later, someone will see you or find text messages, emails, or pictures. You can’t hide it forever.
18. Cheaters are really cheating themselves, too
Everyone wants a happy, healthy relationship— and you’re never going to get that with your hidden romances. You deserve better, so stop cheating yourself out of happiness.
19. You’re driving yourself crazy
You’re paranoid that your partner will find out about you. And since you know how easy it is to cheat, you’ll forever be paranoid that you’re being cheated on. The constant pretending is frustrating. You’ll be a lot happier without that baggage.
20. Take charge of your own happiness
If you are truly miserable in a relationship, then end it instead of cheating. Breaking up is tricky and complicated—but it will provide a lot of relief.
21. True happiness comes from God
Keep His commandments to find joy. If you’ve cheated, then turn to God and let Him make you happy again.