Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Lunacy: Why Women Take Back Cheating Exes

Doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is lunacy. You might have a few posters around work with this particular quote. Did you know it applies to your love life too?

The other day I stumbled across a blog written by a man I knew by reputation. He confesses that he keeps going back to the same woman after cheating on her several times, and even leaving her altogether another half dozen.  This time, he pens, will be different. His goal is to be a better man.

Some people reading the blog will applaud the man for his confession and willingness to be a better man. A few people will believe the words, including the woman, in question.  Too many people want their cheating exes back. The real question is why.

Companies, books, even videos make tons of money on selling the lovelorn gimmicks and tricks to retrieve the wandering ex. Just yesterday on my Facebook page, a tearful video detailed a woman who discovered her ex was cheating on her. She found him with her best friend. He confessed to a year affair with the friend under the woman’s very nose. She cried her eyes out and moped around for months claiming she still loved her ex. How could she love a man who betrayed her and cheated on her?

Most would write the cheating loser off and move on. Too often, people who long for an ex don’t long for the actual man, but the image they created of him. It includes scenarios where the cheating ex becomes a romantic movie character, wooing her with long speeches and generous gifts. It doesn’t matter if this has never happened before. A betrayed woman often wants to believe in her fantasy.

Who wouldn’t? The alternative is to accept the ex that discarded his devoted sweetie the same way he would a used tissue.  This means either the guy is a jerk or the woman is a loser. Neither one is a palatable option for the woman who wants to believe.  Many women don’t want to be part of a broken couple because they will have to go through the whole dating scenario again.   

Better to go with the cheater she knows.  She’ll often rationalize that she must have been the problem. The ex may have blamed her as he left with his current squeeze. The woman seeks out remedies to bring back her errant lover.  She may lure him home with promises to be more loving or more adventurous.  It might even work for a while.

The bad news is it doesn’t last for long. The cheater was between affairs and his ex was a convenient landing spot. Consider he doesn’t have to be charming or on his best behavior with the ex. He probably doesn’t have to spend money either. She doesn’t see him as he is, but as she wants him to be.

Eventually he leaves again despite all the wonderful things the woman does. Sometimes, he doesn’t leave, but continues to cheat while being pampered at home. As a man gets older, he loses his bad boy appeal. It depends on the man when that happens. By then, the man settles because he has no other alternatives. The jilted lover now has a man who wishes he was elsewhere, but has no way to get there.

When people break up, especially when one person cheats, the message is clear. Players play. Data shows that cheaters will cheat again because they are predisposed to it. Too many women want to believe they are the one that will turn a man from his bad boy ways.

A regular guy who cheats isn’t into his current woman.  He doesn’t care if he gets caught and the relationship dissolves. In fact, he wants it to. It makes the exit easier. A committed man doesn’t look for additional partners, but a man on his way out does.

What if the woman left a perfectly ordinary man and now wants him back? She may have felt her life wasn’t exciting enough. The stability and support that her caring spouse offered wasn’t enough for her.  She wanted the excitement of the bad boy. Maybe even the guy writing the blog.  Bad boys don’t care about pleasing women, as opposed to what you see in movies. Instead, they’re out for themselves.

The restless wife or girlfriend finds this out too late. She may try to go back to her reliable man, but will usually find he’s moved on. Keep in mind, the loving man that was left behind realizes his worth and found someone who did also.

Why doesn’t the woman also do this, instead of taking back the cheater, or worse, chasing him? Blame it on the media or poor self-esteem, but she’s sure she’ll get the bad boy back and things will be better. They won’t. She’s shown the man he can do anything and she’ll welcome him back with open arms. In fact, there will be less time between cheating episodes because he suffers no consequences for his actions.

As for the blogger, I doubt he even believes the words he typed. They are, at best, a cheap gift for the woman who keeps taking him back.  He knows she’ll believe them.


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