Sad woman facing away from her partner.

We run through twenty reasons why you should NEVER forgive cheating.

He had the choice not to cheat and he chose to break your heart.

Why You Shouldn’t Forgive Cheating (No Matter How Much He Begs!)

He’s so sorry.

He’s so, so sorry.

But is he really sorry, or just sorry he got caught?

Here are twenty smart reasons why you shouldn’t forgive cheating:

#1: The Trust is Broken.

Shattered window pane.

You won’t be able to trust him again. Come on, you know it. Just admit it now and save yourself some additional heartbreak down the road.

He can do everything in his power to try and convince you that he’ll never do it again.

But you never thought he’d do it in the first place.

And he did.

You’ll never fully trust that he won’t do it again. Can you REALLY be happy knowing that?

#2: He Doesn’t Respect Relationships.

Couple arguing.

A relationship is a commitment. It takes work (although not too much work, we really need to stop glamourising that).

When he cheats, he’s telling you that he doesn’t respect commitment.

What’s the point in cheating when he could just be single? It must be because he really loves you, right? Otherwise why would he bother to try and make it work with you?

Well, there are plenty of things on offer from a steady girlfriend: free emotional labour, free housework, a feeling of comfort, of not being alone in the world… Oh and of course, don’t forget what you give him in the bedroom!

The cheater doesn’t value relationships in the same way you do.

A cheater sees a relationship in terms of what it can offer them, rather than wanting to make a genuine commitment to a partner they love.

#3: He Doesn’t Respect You.

Angry man with sad woman.

He certainly didn’t care about hurting you.

Sure, he might cry NOW (that he’s been caught) and make all these promises and excuses, but it was his CHOICE to cheat on you.

He could have been honest with you.

He could have broken up with you first, to allow you to move on.

He could have CONTROLLED himself.

But he didn’t.

Anyone who chooses to behave in a way they KNOW will hurt their partner (and their confidence) doesn’t respect them.

#4: He Doesn’t Respect Consent.

No means no in orange.

Did he sleep with you before telling you about the affair (if he even told you at all)?

This is a point that a lot of people don’t think about but it’s a really important reason never to forgive cheating.

If he did sleep with you, knowing that if you knew the truth, you never would have agreed to it, that’s CONSENT BY DECEPTION.

If you knew the truth, you wouldn’t have wanted to share your body with him.

But it was more important for him to get his fix than your right to know the truth and to refuse.

#5: He’ll Blame You.

Angry man pointing.

It is NEVER your fault if someone cheated on you.

He had the option not to sleep with her.

Or to break up with you.

But he decided to have his cake and it eat too.

He might blame you outright.

Or it could be indirect.

All of those excuses he gives about feeling lonely, rejected, unsatified, the communication wasn’t working etc. (there are so many of them)

It might sound like he’s really thinking about the relationship and how you can fix it together… But really, he’s just looking for ways to pin the blame on the relationship (i.e. you) rather than his own actions.

If you forgive cheating, you’re going to end up taking on some of that responsibility for it happening in the first place, and to stop him doing it again.

It’s really important to bear this in mind if he brings up the bedroom.

Men often give the excuse of feeling unsatisfied, rejected or unwanted in the bedroom.

He might not DIRECTLY blame you for not sleeping with him enough (or for not doing it in the way he wants, but you’re going to think it yourself.

And you’ll start to do more for him out of fear you’re not doing enough.

And that’s basically just giving him a reward for cheating on you.

#6: It’s A Deal-Breaker.

Men shaking hands.

And it always was.

You ALWAYS told yourself you’d never forgive cheating.

Maybe you’ve even told friends to dump their partner for cheating.

And the fact that you’re thinking of breaking one of your own deal-breakers shows that your standards are dropping.

And someone who makes you drop your standards isn’t worth dropping them for.

#7: It Wasn’t Just Physical.

Feet under covers.

Maybe they had a deep emotional connection.

Maybe he just wanted an ego boost.

But this it was just physical excuse is pure trash.

There are NUMEROUS ways for a man to relieve his urges that don’t include another person.

There’s something else going on other than what he’s told you.

And even if it were just physical, does it really make it better that he was willing to throw everything away and hurt you for something so meaningless?

#8: You’ll Always Be Paranoid.

Worried woman looking on laptop.

Looking over his shoulder when he’s texting someone.

Checking his laptop when he’s out.

Stopping him from seeing his female friends.

These behaviours aren’t healthy for anyone.

Do you really want to be consumed by the fear he’ll cheat again?

Your time is far more valuable than that and you should save your brainpower for something better!

He’ll resent you for being controlling, and you’ll resent him for making you that way (especially if it affects your future relationships).

#9: You Don’t Know the Full Story.

Cheaters RARELY come out with everything at once.

They usually keep the most hurtful parts to themselves (to avoid blame, not to spare your feelings).

You’ll keep reliving the pain after each new revelation.

Which leaves you constantly afraid of what will come out next.

Sounds fun.

#10: He Can’t Take Responsibility.

Man screaming and covering his ears.

It was the alcohol. The stress. He’s just got so much on his plate at the moment…

He couldn’t control himself. He was so caught up in the moment. He might even blame the other woman (don’t be tempted to blame her too, your partner is the one who cheated).

He’ll blame anyone and everything but himself.

But he ALWAYS had a choice. He knew how much it would hurt you and he chose to do it anyway.

In any case, do you really want to be with someone who can’t control himself?

Who wants a life partner who can’t take responsibility for his own mistakes?

That’s not a man, that’s a toddler.

BONUS! Be careful if he blames himself a bit, but also blames someone/something else. Here, he’s trying to trick you into thinking that he’s able to take responsibility for his actions, so that you’ll forgive him, without actually acknowledging that it was COMPLETELY his choice to betray you.

#11: A Cheater Comes With STI Risks.

Close-up of a virus.

Firstly, if you’ve been cheated on, you MUST get yourself to a clinic to get a FULL STI screening.

And even if you get the all clear, there’s always the risk that he will do it again.

Maybe he’s doing it right now…

NO MAN is worth risking your HEALTH for.

Don’t forget that even the STIs that are easiest to treat, such as chlamydia, can cause infertility in women and often produce no symptoms.

Other common STIs such as herpes and genital warts CANNOT BE CURED.

#12: Your Friends and Family Will Hate Him.

Mother and daughter in the park.
Photo by Eye for Ebony on Unsplash

And rightly so.

They might pretend not to, for your sake, but no parent or sibling or best friend is ever going to like the guy who cheated on someone they love.

Or the guy who convinced her to lower her standards enough to forgive cheating.

Wouldn’t it be nice to have a partner you can show off and not feel anxious about taking them over to your mum’s at Christmas?

You might even find that you avoid going to family gatherings altogether because you’re ashamed of him.

Which can end up isolating you from your family in the long run.

#13: He’ll Do It Again.

Mating tortoises.

And why wouldn’t he?

He got away with it the first time, didn’t he?

Oh, but now he knows how much he hurt you, he’d never do it again, right?

Girl, WAKE UP! He KNEW it would hurt you before he did it the FIRST time.

He just didn’t care that much.

And he still doesn’t care that much.

#14: He Knows You’ll Forgive Him (AGAIN).

Man begging woman for forgiveness.

And it’ll be harder for you to stand up for yourself and leave after he cheats on you the second time.

Because if anything damages your confidence more than being cheated on, it’s being cheated on AGAIN after you’ve forgiven them.

When you take back a cheater, a little piece of your self-respect chips off and dies.

And you feel it, somewhere, deep down.

Each time he cheats, and you take him back, you will feel worse and worse about yourself until you’re a shell of your former self.

Unable to leave because you really think you deserve to be treated this way.

#15: He Thinks He Can Do Better.

Arrogant man with glasses.

This is such an important reason never to forgive cheating, especially if you’re not even married!

If he cheated on you before you are even married, he doesn’t see you as the one.

You’re just the one he’s with until the REAL one comes along.

And even if you are married, if he really appreciated you, he would do everything he can to hold on to you and treat you with respect.

He wouldn’t do the one thing that could make him lose you forever.

So if he has cheated, it means he doesn’t really care if he loses you.

Because he thinks there is someone better out there for him. (There isn’t, but YOU deserve better so cut him loose.)

#16: He’s Not Sorry.

Man shrugging his shoulders against orange background.

He’s sorry he got caught.

Did he even admit it to you himself?

Or did you find out on your own and you had to drag it out of him?

If he were REALLY sorry, he wouldn’t have done it in the first place.

It’s not just some little mistake.

Cheating can impact someone for the rest of their lives.

EVERYONE knows how much cheating hurts.

He’s just not sorry.

#17: He Runs Away From His Problems.

Man running up steps.

Basically, he’s a coward.

Instead of tackling issues within the relationship, (or issues with himself), head on… he finds comfort in the arms (and vag) of another woman so that he doesn’t need to work on himself.

The cheater is going to run away from all his problems in life: family, career, relationships, money…

Do you really want to build your life with someone like that?

#18: You’ll Always Feel Insecure.

Worried woman in bed.

And you’ll act on it.

That thing in the bedroom you always refused to do?

Well, if you’re now worried you’re not good enough, and that he’ll cheat again, you’re more likely to give in to your insecurities and ignore your own boundaries.

He’s already shown you he doesn’t respect you.

You think he’s going to refuse to do that thing you don’t like because he knows you’re only doing it because you’re scared of losing him?

Of course not!

He’ll jump at the chance to get his own way and to get his reward from you for cheating.

#19: The Other Woman is Trouble.

Angry woman with messy make-up.

OK, so this might not be applicable to every single situation.

If it was a one-night-stand and the girl doesn’t want anything to do with him anymore, you might not have so much of a problem.

But if it was an affair? She was certainly invested in him enough to keep seeing him, whether she knew he was cheating or not.

You don’t want another woman hanging around your partner at the best of times, but especially not if he’s slept with her!

Nasty messages, harassment, turning up at your house…

These are all common occurrences when you take back a cheater and the other woman still wants to be in the picture.

#20: You Might Be the Other Woman.

Surprised woman with red headband.

How do you know that YOU’RE not the side piece?

If you are SURE that you’re the main piece because you’ve been together for years and have a mortgage (if you have been together for less than two years, what are you doing even THINKING about forgiving him?!?!), then how do you know you’re his FIRST choice?

He might have wanted to be with her.

Start again with her.

But she rejected him.

Very often, people cheat when they want someone else, but they aren’t sure if the other person wants them back, or in the same way.

So they keep their current relationship going as a back-up.

Someone to fall back on so they won’t be lonely when they’re heartbroken after being rejected by someone who wasn’t you.

Do you really want to be someone’s second choice in your own relationship?


There really is no good reason to forgive cheating.

Not only does it put your mental and physical health at risk to stay with a cheater…

You’ll never really know if he CHOSE you, or if he came back to you because the other woman didn’t want him in the end.

The best thing to do when he begs for forgiveness?