Let's face it... cheaters suck. They're selfish and sometimes sociopaths, but this post isn't about them. It's about their victims. It's so easy to give up on the dating game or simply not be able to jump back into it after dating a cheater. It seems they go on with their lives as usual and their victims have to figure out how to love and trust again. Unfortunately, this is pretty much true. There are several factors that play a role in this delay, but in order to get over the betrayal and move on, one must identify the issues and find ways to get over them. Here's a list of 5 things that delay dating after being with a cheater.
1. Self-esteem issues. Being cheated on can create feelings of inferiority and worthlessness. It would appear that the person that he cheated with was better or more attractive, but this has nothing to do with one's worth. Most people would internalize this betrayal and replay it constantly effecting their ability to move on. They'll act like they are unworthy of dating anyone else and no one would would genuinely want to be with them. The key to getting over this is working to rebuild one's self-esteem. I covered the ways to do this in one of my recent posts found here.
2. Trust issues. Ahhh... trust issues. Honestly, people who haven't been cheated on have trust issues too. Cheating compounds existing trust issues into unreasonable heights. What once was an occasional suspicion can start to take over your peace and happiness with any one else you try to date. Separating your ex from your future partner is important here. You must constantly remind yourself that they are two different people and allowing your issues with your ex to form your thoughts about the new partner will poison your chances.
3. Attachment to the Cheater. While they may have betrayed your trust, there's still a level of attachment that can keep you from moving on from a cheater. Familiarity is one heck of a drug and whether it's sexual or just emotional, it's hard to delve into uncharted territory. Staying with the known is always easier than trying to move forward with someone you have to learn. The way to shake this attachment is to remind one's self that this attachment is only beneficial to the other party AND there's someone else more worthy of your attachment.
4. Not wanting to admit the relationship is over. This is BIG. Some people break-up and need a period of time to digest it before announcing and then there are others that continue to give the impression that it's not over so that they won't have to tell the embarrassing story of being cheated on. In this limbo period one avoids accepting the break-up because of embarrassment.
5. Inability to get out of the solitude period. After every break-up there should be a period of re-connection with one's self. During this period, typically, you make sure that you are emotionally solid and prepared to be in a relationship with someone. This period can be really refreshing once you learn how cool it is to love and depend on yourself, but it can also get comfortable for that reason. That's fine if you don't plan to date again, but if so, one must get over the period of solitude and allow someone else into your space.
Although it may be hard and some of this post seems redundant, it's important to overcome these things before unlocking your ability to date again. Good luck loves!