A common cause of breakups is infidelity. One partner steps out of the bounds of the agreed upon relationship in order to get sex, attention, or whatever else from a third party. Honestly, cheating is probably the worst cause of the end of a relationship, as it usually produces the most hurt for the person who got cheated on. However, when some time passes after finding out about the infidelity, your ex might come crawling back to you and be begging for you to get together with them again. Your resolve might be really tough at first and you can resist the initial advances but some doubt starts to creep in and you may begin to wonder if you should indeed accept them back into your life as a lover.
What’s the Right Answer?
My policy has always been that I will not accept fixing things between me and a girl who cheats. That’s it. I can forgive and quickly let it go, but unless we had some sort of open relationship agreement, cheating is immediate grounds for the termination of a relationship.
Now, having said that, this may not be the correct answer for your particular situation. Some couples can work through something like that, however, I think that for most people the mistrust would linger on in some part, even after they worked things out.
What to Consider
In the vast majority of cases, you shouldn’t take back someone who cheats on you. I would strongly urge you to deal with the loneliness you may feel in the short term and move on from the wreckage of that relationship into a new phase of your life. Having said that, maybe you’re hell bent on making it work, but I would take some of the following things into consideration first.
Can You Realistically Get Past This?
It takes much more than simply forgiving a person, you also have to let it go, and not let it interfere with your future relationship. Understand that: the relationship, you once had is now over. So, if you do decide to take back a cheating ex, it’s like starting from scratch. Does them cheating really bother you? Is it going to continue to hinder your ability to trust them in the future? Are you just hanging on because they are currently your best option for a relationship or are they truly the right person? Would someone who is truly ‘right’ for you, even cheat on you in the first place? If all of this, is too much to handle and cope with then the correct course would be to move on.
What Really Has Changed?
It isn’t enough for someone to say that they’ll change their behavior. Hell, everyone says they’ll change bad habits on New Years’ also and we all know how well that works out for the majority of them. Knowing them as you do, what do you honestly think they are going to change about themselves in order to make things work? You have to be honest with yourself about what you want for your future and if this person is even capable of fulfilling what you want in a relationship.
It won’t be a pretty sight if a few months down the line, your partner starts feeling comfortable with their place in your life and then starts to resort right back to the same habits and infidelities which caused the split in the first place.
Is This More About Dependency than Your Self-Respect?
We can really get attached to the person we are in a relationship with and that’s what makes being in love so great. Sometimes though, that attachment becomes a dependency with drug like effects on our lives, moods, and behaviors. Post-breakup can be a really confusing time, even if it’s clear that they hurt you badly. You may really feel that you want them back or that you actually need them in your life but this can often just be a fear of change in your life and a complete dependency on that person.
If they cheated on you, do they honestly respect you? I mean, on some levels I’m sure they do, but do they respect you completely? Do you respect yourself? Do you love yourself? If you are wishy washy on any of these questions then I would once again say, move on with your life. You need to be able to love yourself and recognize what you want and deserve in a relationship. Dependency and addiction is not a recipe for a healthy relationship, especially when someone can clearly violate the trust of the other.
Should you get back together with an ex that cheated on you? I say no and hope that you consider your situation carefully.