What He's Thinking After He Cheats
RELA_Intro_Affair1 of 12
Forced Confession2 of 12
Jamie said that he was "bored" in his two-year-old relationship when he met a beautiful woman in a bar. Later that night, she offered him a ride and they didn't even make it out of the car. "The next morning sucked," says Jamie. "I woke up knowing it was time to confess, but I chickened out." The other woman, however, did not. She got Jamie's girlfriend's number through a mutual friend and told her everything. "I denied nothing. We actually got back together after a month or so, but it didn't last."
Lingering Regret3 of 12
Peter recalls a time in his mid-20s, when the woman he had been living with was out of town for the night. "A co-worker asked to have dinner with me, and I ended up going home with her. What followed was the most intense sexual experience of my life," he says. "That night was a mistake even though it's a powerful memory. My girlfriend happened to call right after." Peter came clean and his girlfriend sent him packing. "I should have just moved on before getting involved with another woman. I regret that I didn't," he says now.
Something Missing4 of 12
Robert carried on a several-months-long affair with a woman he met online. He says that she spoiled him and complimented him, something his wife rarely did. When his wife found out, he agreed to go to counseling but continued communicating with the other woman. "I think it's more likely that we will divorce when all is said and done. My wife's inability to understand [why I cheated] has remained an emotional distance-maker for me from the moment the affair was discovered."
No Remorse5 of 12
Jay was living on the other side of the country from his girlfriend of four years when he engaged in a series of one-night stands. She eventually ended it but was never aware of his betrayals. "I really don't care," Jay says when asked how he feels about it all. "Frankly, I'm kind of proud of [some of the affairs]. I'm glad I didn't spend my 20s sleeping solely with same person. I'm happy that I was able to live life, and I did," he said.
Happily Ever After?6 of 12
Chris met his fiancee toward the end of high school while he was being unfaithful to his former girlfriend. "Months and years after things happened, I started to feel a sense of guilt for what I had done, especially since my ex was a wonderful and selfless girl who wanted nothing more than to make me happy and be happy with me," he says. "In retrospect, I should have gone about things differently, but considering I will soon marry [my fiancee], it seems worthwhile."
Blissful Ignorance7 of 12
Eric was going to confess his cheating to his college girlfriend—who he'd been dating for two years—but he decided against it, citing these reasons: "First, I'm selfish, and didn't want to ruin what could be a good, lasting thing," he says. "Second, I decided that if I wasn't ever going to cheat again, then it was selfish for me to tell. The ease of getting it off my chest wasn't worth causing pain. I never confessed, and I'm glad I didn't." They broke up because it just wasn't working and remained friends. "She actually called me yesterday to tell me she's pregnant and happy," he says.
Covering Up8 of 12
Mark began sleeping with other men in college while he had a "hot girlfriend," saying he didn't have the courage to end the relationship. "Instead, I decided instead to cut her off from sex, knowing that eventually she would cheat on me," he says. His plan worked and he dumped her. Today, he sees his former flame as an "innocent bystander" whom he tricked to ensure his cover. "I've thought about how to apologize more deeply for what I did, but I'm too afraid. I'm not sure if that's fear about hurting her more, or facing how terribly I behaved head-on."
Routine Affairs9 of 12
Phil has been married for five years and going to couples therapy since the start. Recently, however, he's been with numerous other women that he met online. "I'm at a point where I realize that one day this will be over and I will want to come clean. I don't know what the future holds: Will [my wife] take me back, will she throw me out? It's an unknown that will only present itself once we both face the reality and severity of my actions," he says. "It's definitely something I think about daily."
Even Steven10 of 12
Jack had mixed feelings about the night he cheated on his former girlfriend of three years, who had previously cheated on him. "I felt bad for doing something immoral, but I almost justified it as retaliation for her own infidelities," he says. "The breakup needed to happen, so I don't completely regret what happened. Next time, hopefully, I will be able to end a bad relationship before it gets to that point."
Woman's Intuition11 of 12
While living in a different city than his girlfriend, Steven cheated after meeting a woman at a Super Bowl party. "She was everything I've wanted physically, both body- and looks-wise. Amazing personality," he says. While he wasn't caught, he says his girlfriend knew something was up. "She kept calling me saying she wanted to see what was wrong with us," he says. "I told her I couldn't do it anymore, hung up and never talked to her again." That is, until he pursued her again years later when they ended up back in the same city.
Better Off Now12 of 12
Recalling the time he strayed from his then-girlfriend with a co-worker while on a business trip, Alex says he's pretty indifferent to the whole thing now. "I confessed and broke up with her after I got home. We weren't right for each other in the first place, and we're both better off now that we've split," he says.
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