This Is Why Men Cheat Right Before Relationship Milestones
He popped the question, but did he pop into someone else's bed right before? Here's why men cheat as they prepare to settle down.
Cassius really seemed like the wholesome type of guy women settle down with. He was gainfully employed, handsome as could be, and also had a personality that brightened up a room. So, when he started talking to me, I was pretty friggin' happy.
You see, I'm not exactly the type of person most men will commit to. I'm a natural free spirit, and as such, tend to prefer swinging relationships. I don't want kids, so if you're a "family guy," I'm not going to be your pick. My lifestyle and wardrobe choices along make most guys balk.
My hard partying ways are legendary, and when it comes to being a wife, most men don't want that. But, despite everything, I do want to have a partner in crime. I want to be able to come home to something stable. And, seeing a guy like Cassius talking to me made me thrilled.
Knowing that this wholesome guy was the relationship type, I pulled out all the stops when it came to seducing him. It was a whirlwind romance that often involved quickies in his car or short flings. I understood; he had a very demanding job.
Then, the reveal happened.
I ran into Cassius at the mall, and waved at him. He was with another woman—a petite little blonde thing that definitely looked more domestic than I did.
"Hey! How are you?" I asked, totally unaware of what was happening.
He looked at me with a deer-in-the-headlights stare, "Uh, well, uh...Hey."
"What's wrong? Oh, who's this?" I asked. "Babe, you alright?"
"My sister," he stammered.
The blonde looked at him, "Honey, what are you talking about? I'm your fiancee! Who's this?"
"Wait, what?" I asked. "Dude, we've been fucking for three months, I've been talking about a committed relationship, and you're telling me you were engaged? What the hell?"
Cassius lost not one, but two women that day. As for me and the blonde girl (her name is Sarah) we ended up being friends. For the longest time, neither me nor Sarah could figure out why Cassius had felt the need to cheat on her.
It's worth pointing out that this wasn't the only time I've witnessed a guy cheat after he proposed. After reading up on psychology, I figured out what's behind the phenomenon.
I'm not excusing guys' actions, especially if they choose to commit to a woman they're cheating on. No matter why men cheat, it's not something you should accept or put up with.
That being said, knowing the "why's" can help you find solace after the shock of the betrayal wears off.
Before we start talking about the reasons why men cheat when they get into deeper levels of commitment, let's talk about our culture's view on relationships.
Whether we want to admit it or not, our mainstream culture has a really toxic view on relationships. It's also a view that tends to change based on the sex you are. This toxic viewpoint plays into the reasons why men act the way they do towards commitment, and creates cheaters in the making.
From a very young age, women are told that the best thing they can have in life is a relationship. Moreover, they are told that the best relationship they can have is a committed, married one with a child. Women end up aspiring to be housewives because of that positive pressure.
Men, on the other hand? They're told that a relationship literally means "game over." They're told that being married means saying goodbye to their freedom, and that their wives will turn into ugly cows. Society makes monogamous relationships sound terrible!
When men hear about marriage, they often will hear warnings about "losing it all in divorce," and how women only want them for money and babies. All things considered, it's easy to see why men are often commitment-averse and how this can play into their decision to cheat after a relationship milestone is reached.
A fear of lost opportunities is a common culprit.
Have you ever gone on dates with a great guy, only to hesitate when it came to committing to him? Chances are you have—and that you felt that way because you're worried that you might miss out on someone even better.
In society, we're told that we should keep our options open as much as possible. We are told not to settle, and we often live in fear of the dreaded, "What if?"
However, on the flip side, most people are fairly realistic when it comes to commitment. We all know there isn't a perfect human being out there, which is why commitment is still a thing.
When men cheat on their committed wives and girlfriends, it could be because they aren't sure if they can get better. Is it messed up? Absolutely, but that's how guys get when faced with commitment they aren't fully sure about.
In some cases, men also lose attraction to women who they feel they've "locked down."
Let's just be real here—guys love new, shiny toys. So do women. There's something very sexy about kicking off a new relationship. When you've been with the same woman for years, it's easy to get bored of the relationship and seek out other thrills.
That boredom is a common reason why men cheat, but there's something else to take into account here. This alone doesn't explain why a guy would cheat right after proposing or having a baby.
When a cheater feels like he's "locked you down," he feels like he's conquered you. This means there's no more chase for him, and he feels like it's time to venture into other romances for his thrills.
It's also possible that he saw you as a status symbol.
Though society does warn men against marriage, it'd be a lie to say there aren't social benefits to being married. Married men, as well as men in committed relationships, are seen as more trustworthy and responsible.
A relationship is a success indicator in many cases. Married guys earn more money than singletons do, have lower taxes, and also tend to have more social status as they age. And, many guys want that image to be theirs.
Believe it or not, I've personally seen a lot of men who have married women they weren't attracted to. They all did it because they wanted to have the "family man" appearance, or because "that's just what you do" with the type of women they dated.
If he saw being committed to you as a status move, then he may end up straying to someone he's actually attracted to. More often than not, this is a girl who isn't the "committing type" in his eyes.
Some men will cheat as a way to escape issues in their main relationship.
This is by-and-large one of the most common reasons people cheat under any circumstance. When you're just casually dating, you're seeing your date put their best foot forwards. If you're a man, that means seeing your girl in full makeup, looking her best, and also flaunting her epic cooking skills.
As you ease into a committed relationship, you'll stop being so focused on the glamor behind it all. You see your partner fart, puke, get sick, and notice all the little issues that come with living with them. It's not so fun anymore.
One of the reasons why men cheat as they get deeper into commitment is because they want to escape the ho-hum doldrums of the relationship they're committed to. They want the sparkle of a new relationship, or just want to get away from the "nagging fiancee" that they regularly live with.
For guys like this, an affair is a temporary vacation from a permanent relationship.
"Milestone flings" are also a way that some men get their last hurrahs.
We all hear about men who cheat on their brides-to-be with a stripper during their bachelor party. We all have heard about guys who decide to have sex with the ex one last time before they decide to get into another relationship.
Our society paints commitment as the end of a lifestyle and the death of a man's freedom. So, it's not surprising that most men will react to the upcoming commitment level by trying to get a "last hurrah" or a "last taste of freedom."
Most guys who do this tend to see commitment as an end to part of themselves. If you find that your partner cheated for this reason, it could be time to get him into therapy. This isn't a healthy way to view relationships.
Other times, it's a subconscious resistance to commitment.
Whether we like it or not, our minds naturally absorb the messages they see on a conscious and subconscious level. If we are told, repeatedly, that something is good, then we'll eventually believe it—even if it's an agreement on a subconscious level.
The programming society puts into you can be very strong, to the point that it can even brainwash you to act against your own best interest. A lot of guys who are in very happy, committed relationships may cheat because they feel, deep down inside, that commitment really isn't that good.
Guys who get this way don't always realize that it's their subconscious begging them to flee an otherwise good relationship.
If he feels coerced into a relationship, it could be his way of lashing out at you.
The ex I had before I met Cassius was a guy named Alfred. Alfred was exactly what my parents wanted me to date. He treated me well, but I wasn't attracted to him. He was boring, a bad lay, and honestly, just not even the type of dude I wanted to be with.
But, everyone loved him. I was told I was "crazy" for not being into him. My mom wouldn't speak to me if I didn't date him. I caved. Everyone browbeat me into dating him, and I quickly felt trapped in a relationship with him.
I ended up snapping in a gloriously wild way. I slept with all his friends, as well as every single person who showed even any interest. It was my way of lashing out at being in a relationship I didn't want.
When everyone found out I cheated on him with 50 people, they were shocked and I was the bad guy. Sadly, I don't regret it. This kind of behavior, surprisingly, isn't uncommon among people who feel browbeat into commitment. In fact, when things don't feel right, it's a sign of cheating that everyone misses, which was especially true in Alfred's case.
Men who feel similarly trapped in a relationship have a tendency of doing the same—especially if they are resentful of being with the person they're tied to.
For some guys, cheating can be a way they handle personal issues dealing with a relationship.
A lot of men equate marriage and commitment as a sign that they're growing up—and growing old. Many men won't commit or get married until they feel that they no longer can attract women as much as they used to.
No one wants to think of themselves turning into a middle-aged person, nor do they want to think of themselves as past their prime. So, they end up cheating to see if they "still got it," and to prove to themselves that they are attractive.
Finally, there's also the chance that he just "wants it all."
Society has a way of telling us that we can always get more. More money, more women, more love, more attention...more, more, more! Just like how men are warned against commitment, they're also told that they can have their cake and eat it too.
Sadly, society tends to emphasize selfishness like that. And, so, some guys will act that way, simply because they are that dumb and self-centered.
That being said, just about any form of infidelity will require a man to be inconsiderate. The decision to cheat is one that's inherently selfish. It's just the way cheating works, regardless of why men cheat.