You may have heard the phrase “Oncea cheater, always a cheater”… though, this isn’t always the case. Whiletwo-thirds of cheaters become repeaters (serial cheaters), it’s important tonote that the likelihood of a partner repeating infidelity depends on some factors.These factors include influence, personality, acceptance of fault, regret,neglect, and the final outcome. Let’s look at each of these.


While not a big causal factor, thereis some correlation between the types of friends a couple has and theirlikelihood of cheating. According to these, 80 percent of cheaters have closefriends who are also engaging in some form of unfaithfulness to theirspouse/partner. If you want a partner to stay faithful, it’s best to offer themthe influence of other happy couples. You may not be able to choose your partner’sfriends, but you can choose the couples you spend the most time with.


The avoidance-detachment personalitydescribes a partner who is constantly pulling away, looking for ways todistance themselves from the relationship. This can occur when people are youngand unprepared to settle down, but it can also be a sign of someone who isconstantly afraid of intimacy and commitment. In most cases, when oneavoidance-detachment personality exists in a relationship, infidelity is usuallynot far away. Cheating is one of their favorite ways to create a wedge betweentheir relationships. If you find yourself in one of these situations, yourchances aren’t good, unless your partner admits their problem and seeks help.

Acceptance of Fault

People often estimate the likelihoodof an affair by the amount of charisma/attractiveness one partner either has ordoesn’t have. Interestingly, 90 percent of all affairs occur with someone whois not any more attractive, charismatic, or sexy than the cheater’s currentpartner. Most psychologists would confirm that the reasons people cheat usuallyhave more to do with how the cheater feels about themselves, than how they feelabout their partner. In other words, it’s more them than you, so don’t let themtell you otherwise.


As many as 75 percent of affairs endwith the cheater feeling sick with regret. In these cases, the cheater may betransformed (relationship rekindled) if the victim is able to bring themselvesto forgive. Cheaters who are less likely to repeat show sincere remorse fortheir actions. Instead of excuses like “It’s your fault,” “It was an accident”or “It meant nothing,” they take full responsibility and express the need toprevent it from happening again. They’ll open up about their feelings, attendcounseling, and do whatever it takes to regain your trust. In cases like these,it’s possible for a partnership to actually emerge stronger than it was before.


According to surveys, nearly 50percent of cheaters cheat because they feel neglected by their current partneror made to believe about some deficiency. This can either mean a lack ofemotional or physical (sexual) support. In relationships where both partnersfeel loved and satisfied, the chances of infidelity decrease. Keep in mind thatout of the remaining 50 percent, a good portion of these cheaters actuallyreport being “happy,” so this is more of a preventative measure than aguarantee.

Final Outcome

Some researchers believe thatanother indicator of a serial cheater is the severity of the penalty with whichit was received. Cheaters are less likely to fall off the wagon (so to speak)when they’ve had to work through hardships, including guilt, embarrassment,having their life put under a microscope, and attending counseling. Cheaterswho get away without punishment will likely continue to cheat simply becausethey can. Cheating has become an unhealthy dynamic in their relationships. Onethat has gone on too long to be easily stopped. This is one reason why it’simportant to act at the first sign of trouble and make it clear that suchactions are unacceptable.

In summary, to avoid repeatcheaters, look at how each of these factors plays a role in your, relationship andthen weigh your love with what that little voice inside your head is tellingyou. You should eventually forgive your partner for your own good, but don’t beso quick to give them a second chance until they’ve earned it.

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