Mutual Cheating in Marriage

By Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

I got married last year and unfortunately didn’t last too long only for 9 months. Our relationship was around 8 years but it was not that good. he used to cheat on me and when i tried to speak about the situation he always refused. He told me that he cheated on me when he proposed(we were already 6-7 years together) so you can imagine how i felt. I tried to end up the relationship but found it hard to leave. I don’t know why!!!

Because he also was aggressive towards me and used physical abuse so yes i am totally insane! We got married last July, and at first all was great – up to 3-4 months – and then we had a big argument and again ended up in a physical abuse. After a month he started to come at home to eat, drink alcohol and sleep, no other communication at all. Meanwhile things were getting worse.It’s like our love vanished,leading me to cheat on him.

I didn’t feel it was healthy and worthy to continue with our marriage. I told him immediately that i cheated on him and i wanted to go for separation. At first he started smiling and than he got angry and aggressive. The pain that i’m feeling is due to that i cheated on him during our marriage while also being a totally failure :( sometimes i really wish to end my life…

another issue that i have is that i have mood swings. I’ve been with them almost 7 years now. Is it because of my relationship that i had? or any hormonal issue?

A: I don’t think it’s a hormonal issue but if you think so, it is a good idea to check with your doctor. More likely is that you are suffering from the effects of an abusive relationship. From what you told me in your letter, there is little to nothing worth saving. This man has hurt you physically and emotionally. You deserve far better.

I suspect you cheated because you were feeling so bad about yourself that an invitation to cheat made you feel attractive and alive again. That’s not a justification for betraying your own values but it is certainly an understandable reason. I hope you will forgive yourself for grabbing onto a moment of feeling loved.

You need to get out of this relationship once and for all. You’ve spent far too much time and energy and love on it already. You have nothing to gain by trying to fix it. It’s not going to change.

You are not a total failure. You are someone who has been beaten down and undermined to the point that you have lost your self-respect and perspective. If you can’t finally leave this guy, find a domestic violence program or a therapist to help you. You need to reclaim your sense of yourself as someone who is worth being loved and cherished and cared for.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 29 Jul 2013

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2013). Mutual Cheating in Marriage. Psych Central. Retrieved on December 17, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2013/07/29/mutual-cheating-in-marriage/