Infidelity in a relationship doesn’t just hurt the person who has been betrayed – it also breaks trust. Cheating leaves a scar and changes your relationship. Giving your partner a second chance signifies that you believe this trust can be rebuilt and that what you have is worth fighting for.
Forgiveness shows that you’re counting on your partner to change his ways and demonstrate his dedication to your relationship. Unless he has proven beyond the shadow of a doubt that he’s willing to deal with the problems that led to his betrayal in the first place and how important your relationship is to him, you might still feel insecure.
If your gut feeling is making you worry that he’ll return to his old ways, you might be picking up on one of the 5 signs he will cheat again. Let’s see what they are and how to tell if he’s gone back on his word.
5 Signs He Will Cheat Again
Is there truth in the saying “Once a cheater, always a cheater”? There are plenty of warning signs that can tell you if he’ll go back to his past behavior and cheat again.
Some men are serial cheaters, other men cheat because they don’t know how to deal with their problems in a healthy way, and some betray their girlfriends or wives to flatter their egos.
Before you go over the 5 signs he will cheat again, consider this subtle sign that might steer you in the right direction: what’s your relationship like right now? If things between you are similar to what they were when he cheated in the past, another rough patch might be nearing.
Here’s how to know for sure.
1. He has no compassion for what you’ve been through
If he has no compassion for your feelings and doesn’t understand the magnitude of what he’s put you through, he’s the kind of man who has no empathy. Without empathy, he’s likely to cheat again because he doesn’t really care for other people’s feelings.
A cheating husband who has compassion for your feelings will acknowledge your pain and his role in it. He’ll show you that he cares for you and how you feel. Your hurt is real to him, and he wants to do everything he can to help you heal and make it up to you.
If he doesn’t understand your pain and how his cheating has changed you, he won’t have a problem cheating again. He doesn’t grasp the hurt he’s caused you, so he doesn’t think doing it again is a big deal. Dismissing and invalidating your pain is a red flag. He can’t be committed to saving your marriage if he doesn’t see what the big deal is.
It can take a long time to recover from being hurt and betrayed. If your husband has no empathy for you, he won’t have the patience to wait for you to heal. Instead, he’ll try to either rush you or insist you leave things behind you.
This is a warning sign that he only cares about himself and that he’s likely to cheat again as soon as the opportunity presents itself.
2. He didn’t offer you a genuine apology
Unless the cheater is genuinely sorry for what he’s done, you can’t move forward into a healthy relationship. If he’s honestly remorseful and feels guilty for his actions, he’ll acknowledge what he’s done, sincerely apologize, and offer to make it up to you.
A sincere apology doesn’t put the blame on the person who has been wronged. You weren’t the one who made him cheat – it was all about the choices he made. If he apologizes by saying something like, “I’m sorry that you were hurt,” he’s not apologizing for his actions. Instead, he’s blaming you for your reaction.
If he genuinely regrets what he did to you, he’ll give you a real apology: he’ll acknowledge what he’s done, take responsibility for his actions, and show remorse. Instead of a perfunctory non-apology, he’ll say, “Sorry that I hurt you.”
If he’s not sorry for what he did to you, but because you found out, he’ll likely cheat again. Other important issues to consider are whether he was the one to tell you about his infidelity and if he stopped only because he got caught.
If he felt remorse before you found out about his cheating, it’s a good sign that he honestly regrets it and won’t do it again.
3. He’s not working on your relationship problems
People cheat because they’re unhappy with themselves, because they’re unhappy with their relationships, or because they don’t really care about others.
There’s probably a good reason you’ve forgiven his cheating. If you had thought that he was just a cheating jerk and not someone who had made a mistake, would you have given him a second chance?
After cheating, it’s vital to deal with the personal problems or relationship problems that culminated in infidelity. Unless he shows willingness and effort to deal with whatever lead to his cheating, there’s a good chance it will happen again. Have you talked about his infidelity?
A lack of communication makes a healthy relationship impossible, and trying to sweep what happened under the rug will cause things to fester and ruin your relationship even if he doesn’t cheat again. It’s necessary to talk about it so that you can deal with it.
If he’s trying to pretend that the infidelity never happened, you’re not dealing with anything – not with the consequences of his cheating or with what came before. If your relationship looks the same as it did before the infidelity happened, the chances of him straying again are high. You haven’t cleared up his actions, and you haven’t tackled the issues that pushed him to do it.
His lack of willingness to work on your relationship is a red flag telling you he either values his ego too much to admit his wrongdoing, or he just doesn’t care enough about what you have.
4. He has no problem with lying
Cheating goes hand in hand with lying. If he’s lied to you about other things, if he used to lie even before he cheated, if you still catch him being less than truthful, it’s hard to rebuild trust after a difficult betrayal like cheating.
If he lies without a second thought and it’s difficult to recognize when he’s being deceitful, you’ll never be able to believe his words. You’ll have trouble believing that he’s sorry, that he’s changed, that he won’t do it again – you’ll even doubt when he says, “I love you.”
How can you believe that he wants to work on your relationship and rebuild your trust when he lies so casually that even you, who knows him so well, can’t tell if he’s lying? One way to figure out when you’re not sure he’s lying to you is to think about when he’s lied to you in the past, and you found out the truth. Then look for a pattern in his words and actions.
You may have forgiven him for cheating, but you can never be sure what’s going on with a liar. The worst thing about people like this is that it’s hard to tell when they’re lying because they’re so good at it. Lying is second nature to people like this, so they weave their stories seamlessly and without thinking about it.
If he doesn’t consider lying a big deal and still lies to you about random things, it’s a sign that he will cheat again.
5. He has a casual attitude about cheating
Some people don’t consider cheating a big deal because they lack compassion. If cheating is something he doesn’t really have a problem with, he won’t hesitate to stray if he gets a chance.
The best way to know if he’s serial cheating is to look at his past relationships. Are you the first person he’s cheated on, or has it happened before? If he cheated in other relationships as well, it’s easy to assume that he doesn’t take cheating seriously.
A man like this is opportunistic and will take a chance to cheat if it presents itself. Whether an affair or a one-night stand, there’s a high possibility that he will stray again sooner or later. If you break up with him, he’ll probably cheat on his next partner too. Why are some men like this?
One of the reasons is that he doesn’t see sex as something serious. As long as it’s available, he doesn’t see a reason not to take it. Since he’s so casual about sex, he can’t really grasp why cheating would hurt you so much. But don’t get me wrong – he’s very aware of what he’s doing.
Low self-esteem is one of the common reasons why men cheat. He doesn’t feel good about himself, so he looks for external validation, and being desired gives him what he needs. He compartmentalizes his sex life, and sex outside of marriage satisfies his need for power in the relationship.
Watch for his behavior towards other women to see if he’s a casual cheater. If he continues to flirt with others even after you’ve taken him back after infidelity, he might be open to another affair.
How Do You Know If He’s Cheating?
There are certain telltale signs that point to an unfaithful partner. If you notice some of these behaviors in your significant other, you might be once again dealing with a cheating spouse. On the other hand, your partner might have learned his lesson, and he’s now taking his role as a married man seriously.
Relationship experts recommend listening to your gut feeling because it tells you what you already know. Besides, since you’ve already dealt with a cheating husband, your biggest clue is if you notice that things are the way they were when it happened the first time.
To know without a doubt, this is what to pay attention to:
• Less interest in sex. A cheating man is having sex with another woman, so he’s less interested in sex with his wife. If you notice that your husband doesn’t want sex as often as he used to, talk to him about it. If it’s caused by something else, and you believe what he tells you, there are ways of dealing with this problem.
• Your sex life is different. If your husband suddenly wants to do something you’ve never done before and seems to know what he’s doing or changes how he’s always done something with you, you have a good reason to be suspicious.
• You can tell he’s gaslighting you. Gaslighting is manipulative behavior, and its purpose is to make you question yourself. If you’ve confronted your husband about his actions and he gets angry and turns your questions around or is dismissive, he’s trying to get you to stop questioning him and refusing to acknowledge the problem.
• He acts weird. A good sign that he’s up to something is if his behavior changes for the worse. It might not be cheating, but if he’s irritable, dismissive, or avoidant, you can be sure that something is going on. Men who cheat are always on edge, especially around their wives – hiding an affair is hard work.
• You catch him in obvious lies. When your partner cheats, he has to juggle lots of lies, so he might mix things up. He’s secretive when you talk to him. Just talking to you makes him anxious because he’s afraid that you’ll figure it out, so the worst thing for him is if you ask him a question he doesn’t have a good answer to.
• His devices are always with him or locked. A cheater doesn’t want you to look at his computer or his phone because he’s trying to hide something from you.
He keeps his phone close, and he’s always having secret text conversations. He’s changed the way he uses social media apps. He leaves the room when his phone rings. He always clears his browser history. He tabs out of whatever he was doing on the computer when you enter the room. All of these signs could be telling you that he’s trying to keep something hidden.
• He’s distant. When people cheat, they’re afraid of being discovered and try to keep their distance, so you might feel like your boyfriend or husband is avoiding you. You rarely do things together, you stopped going out, and you don’t even hang out at home. If you feel like he’s drifting away, it might be a sign that he’s cheating again.
• He’s trying to look better. If he has another woman in his life, he’ll try to make himself more attractive. With you, he can relax because he’s confident about your feelings, while he’s still trying to attract the other woman.
If he’s suddenly going to the gym, buying better clothes, wearing cologne, and generally paying attention to his appearance, it’s possible that he’s trying to make himself look good for someone else.
• He’s suddenly always busy. Has he been working overtime a lot? Going out with his friends? Taken up a new hobby? If he’s suddenly swamped with things to do, he might be doing none of those things, but instead, having an affair again. If he doesn’t want to talk about any of it when you ask him, there’s a reason for concern.
How Do You Know If The Cheater Has Changed?
• He has opened up to you about the infidelity. A good sign that a cheater has changed is if he’s able to talk to you openly about everything that happened. If he truly feels remorse, he’ll be willing to work on dealing with the consequences of his actions and take responsibility.
• He accepts that he’s the one to blame. A cheater who knows what he did was wrong and regrets it won’t blame you, his problems, or the other woman for his actions. He knows that cheating was his choice and no one else’s and acknowledges the hurt he’s caused you by making it.
• He’s dealing with the reason it happened. The underlying causes of cheating are either emotional and mental, or it can be a sign of relationship problems. If he has acknowledged why he did it and he’s taking steps to deal with it and help your relationship recover from his affair, it’s a sign he has changed.
• He’s willing to seek help. If he’s willing to get professional help to guide him through dealing with his problems, it shows a willingness to stop cheating once and for all.
Couples counseling can help both of you work through the infidelity and its consequences, so if he’s doing it with you, he’s showing how serious he is about dealing with the consequences of his actions.
• He makes you feel secure. If he’s doing all he can so that you don’t have to wonder if he’s going to cheat again, you can be sure that he’s changed. If he’s working hard on proving to you that he regrets his actions and won’t repeat them, it’s a good sign.
• He’s focused on you. After infidelity, you become especially sensitive about how he acts around you and around other women. A cheater who has truly changed has made a decision and chosen your relationship over others, so he’s focused only on you because you’re the only one he cares for. If he’s showing you that you’re all that matters right now, you can put your worries aside.
• He’s committed to your relationship. Commitment is a key sign that he won’t cheat again. If he’s consistently trying to prove that he’s serious about you and your relationship, in time, you’ll be able to accept it. If he makes you a priority and always tries to show you that you have an important place in his life, he’s letting you know that he’s dedicated to you.
• He’s trying to make it up to you. Acknowledging his actions is one thing, but if he’s truly remorseful, he’ll show you by trying to make it up to you. He’s aware that he has caused you hurt and trauma, and he wants to help you heal from it. Confronting your shared problems, working on your issues, and learning to deal with conflict constructively are all ways to repair your relationship.
• He’s willing to rebuild trust. Trust is the hardest thing to regain after cheating. It doesn’t matter if he had a one-night stand or an emotional affair – unless you’re convinced that he regrets it and won’t do it again, your relationship can’t heal. If he’s patient, understanding, and committed to proving to you that things are different, it’s a good sign that he has changed.
After you decide to take your boyfriend or husband back after he cheats, it takes a long time to rebuild the trust that was destroyed by his infidelity. While your feelings are still fragile and you’re still dealing with the heartbreak, it’s normal to have insecurities and worry about making your relationship work.
If you suspect that something is already happening, your hurt feelings might be making you see signs that your husband is cheating, even if they don’t exist. On the other hand, there’s a possibility that you’re picking up on some of the 5 signs he will cheat again, and this is what’s making you anxious.
You forgave him the first time, but if he’s cheating again, can you bring yourself to take him back again? I’m afraid that no amount of relationship advice can make this decision for you, but I can only tell you to choose what you believe to be the best for you.