Lies & Cheating


Reader Question 

I received a question from a reader in Strasbourg recently, in J’s question he said “I have been in a relationship for 6 months and am confused about cheating. My boyfriend and I disagree on what it is. Iy just seems to me that it's all too much...............Relationships shouldn't be like this, shouldn't we respect each other enough to be loyal.................... what do you think”. Obviously that is only an excerpt but I’ll do my best to answer it.

I see life as hard enough without complicating things with dishonesty in relationships which are meant to be the most honest part of your life. If you can’t agree with your partner on this very basic of relationship rules then you really shouldn’t be in it. You said it right when you used the word respect. I would think that respecting each others feelings and beliefs wouldn't be that big of a sacrifice when you are in a relationship. In fact it shouldn't even be a thought.

Every relationship is different and it may be necessary to discuss the rules and boundaries of the relationship with your partner. It is important that your partner knows what you consider unacceptable in your relationship. Then it’s up to your partner to decided whether what you require in this relationship suits what he is looking for. If not he can leave. Generally for me I would consider any dishonesty a deal breaker. But in particular in the area of cheating or similar I think it comes back to a discussion with your partner and that way there can be no question as to what you think and what the boundaries are for the relationship to continue.

I personally consider cheating a number of things. I consider it any of the obvious physical contact including kissing. I consider it any online contact/chat that involves even flirtation that has any sexual aspect or innuendo. There is more, but these are a couple of the things we in our relationship think is important. But I think the more important part is it’s about dishonesty because dishonesty is the cause of mistrust.

People make a lot of excuses around dishonesty, but the reality is that irrelevant of what someone thinks, if you truly love someone you will not be dishonest in any way. I can’t fathom why someone would even consider dishonesty. If you are not sure, than talk to your partner. Why even place doubt in your partners mind and the reality is that when you are in a relationship, you pick up on a lot more than your partner realises and visa versa. It’s a side effect of being with someone. The subtle things are potentially big things. J, maybe you should explain this to your boyfriend because if you both can’t agree on the standards for your relationship and care enough to respect those things that make each of you uncomfortable then maybe you need to consider the future of the relationship.

Here is the bottom line......If your partner is being dishonest and you feel he will continue with behaviour you consider is dishonest then get out. You really don’t want to get 5 years down the track and then discover he’s back to his old ways. This will just make it harder. These are hard decisions but we all have to make them at some point. I have encountered dishonesty in the past and for me now it’s the most important factor and I will end a relationship over it. Luckily right now I have a partner who I feel is totally honest and has integrity.

If you look at the relationship breakdown’s on FB, you start to see trends as to the causes. Dishonesty seems to be the number one reason. Why risk it. I had a partner once who said if I don’t tell you it’s not lying. That’s a very childish attitude and as you can see that relationship didn’t last. Turns out he was doing things that I had made clear I couldn’t accept in our relationship. What it really showed is not only was he a liar, but he really didn’t have respect or love for the relationship or me.  It was a dealbreaker!

J, I hope you can communicate what you need to your partner. You may find that he really is ok with what you need, but if you don’t communicate it, he won’t know. Hope all goes well.